Drouin suspended by Lightning for failing to report to minor-league game

The Jonathan Drouin saga took another twist on Wednesday night when the Tampa Bay Lightning prospect refused to report to an American Hockey League game between the Syracuse Crunch and Toronto Marlies. The team announced the 20-year-old as a scratch at Ricoh Coliseum prior to puck drop, adding in a statement that he has been "suspended indefinitely without pay by the team after his failure to report for tonight's game."

TORONTO — The Jonathan Drouin saga took another twist on Wednesday night when the Tampa Bay Lightning prospect refused to report to an American Hockey League game between the Syracuse Crunch and Toronto Marlies.

The team announced the 20-year-old as a scratch at Ricoh Coliseum prior to puck drop, adding in a statement that he has been “suspended indefinitely without pay by the team after his failure to report for tonight’s game.”

Earlier this month it was made public that Drouin, through his agent, had requested a trade from the Lightning back in November.

According to Drouin’s agent Allan Walsh, when the forward was assigned to the AHL club on Jan. 2, it was explained that the assignment was for conditioning purposes and show other NHL clubs he had recovered from his injury.

“A few days ago, the Tampa Bay Lightning advised that a trade involving Jonathan was moving closer to completion,” Walsh said in a statement on Wednesday. “We proposed to Tampa that Jonathan not play in the next few AHL games but continue practising with the club to avoid any potential injury from preventing an imminent trade. Unfortunately, the Tampa Bay Lightning refused this reasonable request, however, Jonathan was not willing to accept this risk. We have been advised that the Tampa Bay Lightning has suspended Jonathan.

“In light of the latest developments it is clearly in both sides best interests that the Tampa Bay Lightning trade Jonathan as there is no reason for Jonathan to continue with the Tampa Bay Lightning organization in any capacity.”

In seven games since joining the Crunch, Drouin has two goals and an assist to go along with a minus-1 rating.

“He’s been great. He’s worked hard in practice, worked hard in games — no issues at all,” said Syracuse head coach Rob Zettler following the team’s morning skate on Wednesday. “Its been fun having him here, guys have enjoyed his presence, enjoyed him in the locker-room.”

Drouin was a full participant in the team’s morning skate, which lasted roughly 30 minutes Wednesday morning and was seen joking around with teammates on the ice.

“I think the hardest part is, as a young player, you’re always at the mercy of where you get picked,” said Jeff Tambellini, a veteran of 242 NHL games and Syracuse’s leading scorer. “Different teams have different opportunities available and you never know what you’re going to come into.

“(Drouin) is a good player, everybody knows that. He just got picked by a team that’s ready to win a Stanley Cup. Sometimes the same opportunity in Phoenix is different than the one in Tampa — it’s always a difficult situation.”

Originally the third overall selection by the Lightning at the 2013 NHL draft, Drouin has six goals and 34 assists in 89 career games with Tampa Bay.

“I don’t know if (the trade request) surprises me, you’ve seen it before with players at different levels, but he’s trying to do what’s best for his career,” said Zettler.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Red Deer RCMP seek public’s assistance after fatal hit and run

A male pedestrian was fatally injured Sunday afternoon after being hit by… Continue reading

Oilers 50/50 raffle delayed further as team resolves errors, offers refunds

EDMONTON — A record-setting Edmonton Oilers 50/50 draw won’t have a winner… Continue reading

The latest numbers on COVID-19 in Canada for Aug. 9

The latest numbers of confirmed COVID-19 cases in Canada as of 4:50… Continue reading

Liberals turn over thousands of pages on WE decision, lawyers now vetting docs

OTTAWA — The federal Liberal government has handed over thousands of pages… Continue reading

Samson Cree Nation reeling after 10 year-old-boy-shot, 13-year-old charged with manslaughter

‘Don’t give up, keep praying, we will get through this’

QUIZ: Do you know the truth?

In what has been described as a post-truth era, how much do you know about truth and lies?

Cast your votes for Best of Red Deer

The Advocate’s Best of Red Deer Readers’ Choice Awards are back. Community… Continue reading

Sylvan Lake couple donates $850,000 to AACS

The doantion will be put towards a new X-Ray machine for the facility

Call the police if you’re disturbed by noisy vehicles

I’m disgusted at the nightly vehicle noise in Red Deer. Night after… Continue reading

Explosion helps to hasten the meltdown of Lebanon

Beirut has been living with car bombs and air raids on a… Continue reading

Take comfort — it could be hotter

If it’s one thing we humans are pretty good at, it’s complaining… Continue reading

Singer Salome Bey, known as Canada’s first lady of the blues, dies at age 86

Singer Salome Bey, known as Canada’s first lady of the blues, has… Continue reading

US investigates electrical fires in 2014 Chrysler minivans

DETROIT — The U.S. government’s road safety agency is investigating complaints of… Continue reading

Greece slams Turkish announcement on energy research in eastern Med

ATHENS, Greece — Greece on Monday slammed a Turkish announcement that it… Continue reading

Most Read