Tampa Bay Lightning sends James Wright back to WHL Vancouver
The Tampa Bay Lightning sent forward James Wright back to juniors. The move makes room on the roster for center Nate Thompson, who the team picked up on waivers Thursday from the Islanders. Because Wright, 19, played moret han nine NHL games, Tampa Bay will forfeit one year off the three-year contract to which it signed Wright.
Here is the announcement from the team:
The Tampa Bay Lightning assigned center James Wright to the Vancouver Giants of the Western Hockey League today, Executive Vice President and General Manager Brian Lawton announced today.
“We are excited for James to get back to junior to continue his development. We feel the 20-plus minutes a night he receives there will be the best for his long-term growth,” Lawton said. “He has made strides far greater than we projected this soon in his career and we look forward to seeing him continue that growth.”
Wright, 6-foot-3, 196 pounds, has played in 48 games with the Lightning this season, recording two goals and five points while averaging 11:38 in ice time per game. He made his NHL debut on October 3 at Atlanta and netted his first goal October 22 versus San Jose. He is currently fifth on the Lightning among forwards in hits with 51.
A native of Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, Wright had played the previous four seasons with Vancouver, amassing 39 goals and 95 points in 181 career games played. Wright has also appeared in 37 career playoff games, recording seven goals and 15 points.
Wright was drafted by Tampa Bay in the fourth round, 117th overall, of the 2008 NHL Entry Draft.