Gabriel Bourque is finally returning to Nashville to spare us the indignity of relying on #TheClune. (PHOTO: Don McPeak-USA TODAY Sports)

Nashville Predators Recall Forward Gabriel Bourque

I asked you earlier this morning if the Preds ought to recall a forward. They made their decision not to stick with Rich Clune as the answer to Nashville’s on-ice woes official just a few minutes ago, recalling forward Gabriel Bourque from the Milwaukee Admirals.

The 22-year-old Bourque was a spark plug here in Nashville last season. He began the season with Milwaukee, scoring 14 points (2G-14A) for the Admirals before being called up to Nashville for depth. Once here he made it impossible to send him back down. He picked up 19 points (7G-12A) in 43 games with the big club. He played in all sorts of situations, from the lower lines all the way to the top lines, during his time here. He also scored three goals in the playoff series against Detroit, tied for the team lead, and added an assist for good measure.

Gabriel Bourque was widely expected to make the Nashville Predators roster out of training camp but never even hit the ice here in Nashville during the week-long preseason due to an injury he received in December. In 15 games with Milwaukee this season he has 12 points (7G-5A). He should be staying with the Predators for a while, though he’s still on a two-way contract and doesn’t have to clear waivers so he could still earn a return trip to Wisconsin if he somehow underperforms. But given that his competition consists of either the bottom of the Preds’ roster – also known as Rich Clune, Brian McGrattan, and Brandon Yip – or the underperforming forwards higher up that he’s called on to replace, one has to like Bourque’s chances of sticking in Nashville for a second straight season.

One only hopes that Gabriel Bourque can rediscover his form from last season. He didn’t play that much in Milwaukee during the lockout due to injury, but he was quite a contributor in Nashville last season, especially in the playoffs:

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