It Begins: Blackhawks Trade Alex Nylander to the Penguins

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It Begins: Blackhawks Trade Alex Nylander to the Penguins

Chicago Blackhawks

The end of the Alex Nylander era comes today. The Chicago Blackhawks have traded the 23-year-old winger to the Pittsburgh Penguins in exchange for forward Sam Lafferty.

The Blackhawks have turned their No. 26 pick in the 2017 NHL Draft into the No. 29 pick (Henri Jokiharju) and the No. 70 pick (Andrei Altybarmakyan) that year. Then turned Jokiharju into Nylander prior to the 2019-20 season. Now they have turned Nylander into Lafferty. What a clown show.

Alex Nylander came to the Blackhawks with all the potential in the world to be a top forward. He never reached it consistently, bouncing across the lineup and eventually finding himself back in the AHL with the Rockford IceHogs. This season in the AHL, Nylander was tied for the team-lead in goals (8) and had 12 points in 23 games.

Now the Blackhawks get Lafferty, 26, who is a physical forward and has 21 points in 94 career NHL games, all with the Penguins. Lafferty is a former fourth-round pick by the Penguins and is on the second year of a two-year, $750,000 AAV deal. He is a restricted free agent this summer.

For a Chicago team that is 30th in the NHL goals per game, the last kind of player they should be trading a skill player for is a player who is a non-offensive threat. But what do I know?

Interim general manager Kyle Davidson is acting as if he is going to be the permanent general manager in Chicago. He’s fired Jeremy Colliton and replaced him in the interim with Derek King. For the most-part, that has worked out in the short-term. He’s also acquired Kurtis Gabriel and now Sam Lafferty, in exchange for Chad Krys and Alex Nylander. Again, for an offensively inept organization both at the NHL and AHL level, I don’t get these moves.

Remember, this is just the beginning.

Author: Mario Tirabassi

Mario Tirabassi is a writer for Bleacher Nation. You can follow him on Twitter @Mario_Tirabassi.