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Tampa Bay Lightning claim Riley Nash off of waivers

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Pittsburgh Penguins v Winnipeg Jets Photo by Jonathan Kozub/NHLI via Getty Images

On Tuesday, the Tampa Bay Lightning claimed forward Riley Nash off of waivers from the Winnipeg Jets. The 32-year-old from Alberta has been in the league for 11 seasons and appeared in 593 games with Winnipeg, Columbus, Boston, and Carolina recording 63 goals and 172 points. Nash was originally a first-round pick, 21st overall for the Edmonton Oilers all the way back in 2007.

Nash isn’t going to bring a ton of offense to the Lightning. In 15 games with the Jets this season, the 6’2, 188 lbs. forward, has recorded a grand total of 0 points. Back in 2017-18 he had a break out season with 41 points (15 goals, 26 assists), but since then he hasn’t cracked 14 points on a season.

What he does bring is some defense.

Evolving Hockey

Don’t worry about the power play side of that chart. He isn’t likely to see any time on the PP for the Bolts. Keeping the opposing forwards off of the scoresheets will be his role with the team.

It will be interesting to see where the Lightning actually slot him into the rotation. With the Kid Line playing well and the fourth line finally contributing some goals, there doesn’t appear to be a gaping need for his services. That being said, you can never have too many defensive-minded players on the team.

It’s likely that Gabriel Fortier will head back to Syracuse and Nash will rotate into the line-up somewhere. It’s possible that he draws in on the fourth line and either Corey Perry or Patrick Maroon bounces up to the second line or Nash lines up in that spot and the Anthony Cirelli/Alex Killorn line becomes a true-shutdown line a la Yanni Gourde’s last season.

We’ll have to wait and see how Coach Cooper deploys his new player, in the meantime - welcome to Tampa, Riley Nash!

Full Press Release

TAMPA BAY – The Tampa Bay Lightning claimed forward Riley Nash off waivers from the Winnipeg Jets, vice president and general manager Julien BriseBois announced today. Nash will join the team in Toronto.

Nash, 32, has skated in 15 games with the Winnipeg Jets this season, recording four penalty minutes and seven shots on goal. The Consort, Alberta native has appeared in 593 career NHL games over 11 seasons with the Jets, Columbus Blue Jackets, Boston Bruins and Carolina Hurricanes, posting 63 goals and 172 points to go along with 138 penalty minutes. Nash has also skated in 34 career Stanley Cup Playoff games, including two last year with Toronto, registering two goals and eight points.

The 6-foot-2, 188-pound forward set career highs for goals (15), assists (26) and points (41) during the 2017-18 season while with the Bruins. Nash was originally selected by the Edmonton Oilers in the first round, 21st overall, at the 2007 NHL Draft.