One of the trades that probably didn’t get as much attention as it should have this offseason was one that sent Ryan McDonagh to the Nashville Predators. Essentially a salary dump by the Tampa Bay Lightning, the 33-year-old defenseman was acquired for almost nothing, despite being one of the most experienced postseason players in the league.
Though it got off to a rocky start, the Predators-McDonagh partnership has been strong of late, resulting in a 7-2-1 record in their last ten. Unfortunately, things will stop there, at least for a little while. McDonagh has been placed on injured reserve and is expected to miss two to four weeks. Jordan Gross has been recalled in his place.
McDonagh is dealing with an upper-body injury, taking more than 20 minutes per night out of the Nashville lineup. The veteran was facing all of the top competition and logging heavy defensive deployment, while anchoring the team’s penalty kill.
Without him, even more responsibility will likely be placed on Mattias Ekholm, in order to keep Roman Josi free to deliver offensive results. In Friday’s game, when McDonagh left early, Alexandre Carrier also saw a season-high 21:39, a good sign that he will be leaned on heavily in the interim.
I’m assuming this has to do with getting hit in the face with a puck this weekend? Took about 10 minutes to clean all his blood off the ice!