The Coyotes announced (Twitter link) that they’ve scratched center Nick Bjugstad tonight for trade-related reasons, joining defenseman Jakob Chychrun on that front. Taking Bjugstad’s place on the roster will be center Laurent Dauphin who has been recalled from AHL Tucson.
Bjugstad opted to sign a one-year, $900K contract with Arizona last summer in the hopes of playing a regular role and rebuilding some value after three straight quiet, injury-riddled seasons. The move has turned out to be a good one for the 30-year-old who has posted 13 goals and 10 assists so far in 59 games while winning just over 47% of his faceoffs. He also is averaging two hits per game. With a low price tag, Bjugstad is the type of fourth liner that teams will certainly be looking to add to shore up their depth between now and Friday’s trade deadline and the Coyotes are making sure he’ll be available to be traded over risking him getting injured in tonight’s game against Chicago.
That decision gives Dauphin his third opportunity with the Coyotes this season. The 27-year-old signed a one-year, two-way deal with Arizona in the summer but has only gotten into three NHL contests so far after suiting up in 38 with Montreal in 2021-22. However, Dauphin has been productive in the minors with the Roadrunners, tallying 16 goals along with 25 assists in 48 games so far.