The Kansas City Mavericks will have added firepower when they play host to the Allen Americans Friday and Wichita Thunder Saturday and Sunday.
Forward Mitch Hults and defender Zach Osburn have been reassigned by their American Hockey League affiliate, the Stockton Heat.
The Mavericks also acquired forward Dylan Fitze and future considerations from the Orlando Solar Bears in exchange for forward Tad Kozun Wednesday afternoon.
The future considerations included were originally sent to the Solar Bears in a Jan. 30 transaction in which the AHL’s San Jose Barracuda reassigned defenseman Marcus Crawford to Kansas City instead of Orlando.
“We are so excited to get Mitch and Zach back for what might be the three biggest games of the season,” Mavericks interim head coach Kohl Schultz said Wednesday afternoon. “I don’t want to sound too crazy, but the upcoming three games could define our entire season.
“We’re still able to control our own destiny because our remaining games are all within our division, but we’re in serious trouble if we don’t get four of six points this weekend. And it’s unusual to have three-in-three all at home.
“We had the three-in-three at Utah earlier this season (where the Mavericks won the first two games), and having three-in-three at home, where the guys can go home and sleep in their own beds is huge.”
The 24-30-3-1 Mavericks are in sixth place (52 points) in the Mountain Division and trail fourth-place Tulsa (64) by 12 points. The top four teams in each division advance to the playoffs.
Fitze, a 6-foot-2, 203-pound 27-year-old from Peterborough, Ontario, has eight points on four goals and four assists in 37 games for Orlando this season. He turned in an impressive rookie campaign, notching 27 points on 14 goals and 13 assists in 51 games during the 2018-19 ECHL season for Orlando.
Kozun departs Kansas City after posting 25 points on 12 goals and 13 assists in 52 games for the Mavericks this season.
“First and foremost, I want to say that Tad was a model citizen in the community and did a great job representing the Mavericks on and off the ice,” Schultz said. “But you have to trade talent to get talent and we needed some size and the arrival of Fitze gives us that size.”
Hults has had two assists in 12 games in the AHL with Stockton this season. He has 10 goals and 17 assists in 25 games with the Mavericks.
Osburn was the Mavericks’ ECHL All-Star Game representative this season, and has totaled seven goals and 19 assists in 47 games for Kansas City. He appeared in five games for Stockton.
Friday and Saturday’s games are at 7:05 p.m. and Sunday’s contest starts at 4:05 p.m. at Silverstein Eye Centers Arena.