The Tampa Bay Lightning have placed forward Conor Sheary on injured reserve and recalled Waltteri Merela back to the NHL lineup. Merelä was sent to the AHL on November 5th, after starting the season with the Lightning, but wasn’t able to play any AHL games before he rejoined the top club.
Sheary left the team’s Tuesday night game after being hit up high by a shot in the first period. It’s hard to tell where Sheary got hit, although it appears the injury could be in his wrist or hand. It’s officially being described as an upper-body injury.
Sheary has appeared in 13 games with Tampa Bay this season, tallying three points, four penalty minutes, and a -3. It’s his first year with the Bolts, after spending the last three seasons with the Washington Capitals. Sheary was brought into Tampa to serve as glue for the team’s top-nine, making his injury that much tougher to bear.
Merelä rejoins the Lightning in Sheary’s absence, after playing 10 games with the NHL club earlier in the season. Merelä went without a point in that span and recorded two penalties. The 25-year-old centerman is in his rookie NHL season, after signing with Tampa as an undrafted free agent out of the Liiga, Finland’s top league. He scored 33 points in 41 games with Tappara Tampere last year, serving as apart of the championship-winning roster. He will look to record his first NHL point now that he’s back with the NHL lineup.