The drama is not over. Jonathan Drouin has been recalled to the NHL just two games before the end of the regular season.
That situation arose because he requested a trade earlier in the season and then made that request public after he was reassigned to the AHL. It wasn’t long after the reassignment that his agent announced he wouldn’t play any more because he didn’t want to risk getting injured when a trade was on the horizon. That led to the team suspension.
The trade deadline came and went, and a trade never came.
He returned to Syracuse, and now he’s returning to the NHL.
It’s a strange opportunity for Drouin to mend bridges with the team, to put his skills on display for teams that want to acquire him via trade in the summer and possibly even to see if there’s a situation where he’d want to start a part of the organization.
The Lightning would love to see him thrive and up his value or find a new love for the organization, since they’re starting the playoffs without star
center wing Steven Stamkos.
In addition to all of this, if Drouin is in the lineup for the next two games, it also helps him burn off a year toward free agency, so the timing is fortuitous for a player who has expressed concerns about where he’s playing. There’s no guarantee he will suit up for those two games, but it’s a possibility now that he’s been recalled.
The drama level of the Jonathan Drouin saga has been high, and never ends. Even after he came back from his suspension, he missed a team meeting and was held out of a game.
The team also recalled Matt Taormina from Syracuse, and sent Slater Koekkoek back to the AHL.
No sign of Ryan Callahan. Players give Drouin some stick taps prior to Cooper going over game plan.
— Mike Morreale (@mikemorrealeNHL) April 7, 2016
Dustin Nelson is the News Editor for The Hockey Writers. He’s a contributor to Hockey Prospectus, Hockey Wilderness, and writes a column for Rotowire. He’s also written for Gone Puck Wild, Wild Xtra, InDigest, Electric Literature, The Rumpus, Tiny Mix Tapes, Prefix Magazine & other publications. Have a tip? Email him at dlukenelson[at]gmail[dot]com.