The WHL's Regina Pats, as expected, have traded former Lightning first rounder Carter Ashton. The Regina Leader-Post reports the Pats sent Ashton to the Tri-City Americans with a third-round pick for forward Tanner Olstad, forward Nils Moser, a first-round pick in the 2011 WHL bantam draft, and second and fifth round picks in the 2010 bantam draft.
Ashton, who signed a professional contract with the Lightning in 2009, is in his final year of junior and with Regina struggling again this year, it was only a matter of time before the Pats sent him to a playoff contender for future help.
Tri-City is currently tied for second in the U.S. Division, 13 points behind Portland.
Ashton, chosen 29th overall in the 2009 draft, was third on the Pats in scoring with 27 points (16 goals) in 29 games. His 27 points will slot him in second on the Americans.
Ashton will join the Team Canada World Junior Championship Selection Camp this weekend.
The Tampa Bay Lightning acquired center Levi Nelson from the Boston Bruins in exchange for left wing Juraj Simek, Vice President and General Manager Steve Yzerman announced today. Nelson will be assigned to the Norfolk Admirals of the American Hockey League.
Nelson, 6-foot-0, 192 pounds, has appeared in 14 games with the AHLâ€™s Providence Bruins this season, recording four goals and seven points with a plus-3 rating. His four goals rank fourth among all Bruins skaters, while his 19 penalty minutes rank sixth.
A native of Calgary, Alberta, Nelson has played in 118 career AHL games, all with Providence, notching 14 goals and 27 points. His best season came in 2009-10 when he registered AHL career-highs with eight goals, five assists and 13 points in 44 games. He has also recorded two goals and three points in nine career Calder Cup Playoff games. In addition, Nelson has appeared in eight career ECHL games with the Reading Royals, recording two goals, three points and 28 penalty minutes.
Prior to his first full professional season, Nelson excelled at the junior level during four seasons with the Swift Current Broncos of the Western Hockey League. In 198 career games with the Broncos he amassed 65 goals, 152 points and 340 penalty minutes. He also appeared in 22 WHL playoff games, notching 11 goals and 22 points. He ranked seventh among all WHL skaters during the 2007-08 playoffs with 15 points in 12 games.
Nelson was originally selected by the Boston Bruins in the sixth round, 158th overall, at the 2006 NHL Entry Draft.
The Scouting Report is reporting Lightning prospect and Belleville leading scorer Richard Panik has been traded by the Bulls to the OHL's Guelph Storm. In return, Belleville will receive Carter Sandlak and a flip of 2nd round picks.
Panik has 14 goals and 31 points in 27 games this season, which will put him third on the Storm's stat leader sheet, one behind its leaders. Guelph sits in last in the strong Midwest Division at 10-11-3-1 for 24 points, three points behind Erie and London for third. Belleville had 18 points at the time of the trade.
Bob McKenzie of TSN is reporting the Tampa Bay Lightning has claimed prospect left winger Mattias Ritola off of waivers from the Detroit Red Wings. The 5'11" and 205 lb winger was a 2005 4th round pick of the Red Wings and has scored 41 goals and added 65 assists in 211 games for the AHL's Grand Rapid Griffins, and has one assist in 7 games for Detroit.
In other news, the Norfolk Admirals cut prospect Mitch Fadden from their training camp on Monday, reassigning the forward to the Florida Everblades of the ECHL. Fadden, slowed by a shoulder injury sustained during the Traverse City Prospects Tournament in September, has yet to show the progress he made as a rookie in the last half of the 2009-10 season.