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‘Hawks assign Motte to AHL, which may signal return of Hossa

St Louis Blues v Chicago Blackhawks

CHICAGO, IL - OCTOBER 01: Tyler Motte #64 of the Chicago Blackhawks participates in warm-ups before a preseason game against the St. Louis Blues at the United Center on October 1, 2016 in Chicago, Illinois. (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)

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In what may be a sign that Marian Hossa is ready to play again, the Chicago Blackhawks have assigned forward Tyler Motte to the AHL.

Motte hadn’t been playing much prior to today’s demotion. He logged just 10:21 of ice time in yesterday’s Winter Classic, which the ‘Hawks lost to St. Louis, 4-1. The 21-year-old rookie has four goals and three assists in 33 games.

Chicago doesn’t play again until Thursday versus Buffalo at United Center.

Still remaining with the ‘Hawks is center Tanner Kero, who has helped replace the injured Marcus Kruger.

Hossa has missed five games with an upper-body injury, but was close to playing yesterday.

Related: Motte out 2-3 weeks after crashing heavily into boards (Video)