The Nashville Predators have acquired forward Nick Baptiste from the Buffalo Sabres in exchange for defenseman Jack Doughtery. More on this deal to come.
The 23 year old Baptiste played 33 games with the Sabres’ in 2017-18, scoring four goals and six points, with 14 penalty minutes. The 6 foot, 1 inch, 205 pound winger was originally drafted in the 3rd round (69th overall) by the Sabres in the 2013 NHL Entry Draft. He clearly had a tough time cracking the Sabres' roster this season, but it's tough to see how he'll factor into the Preds' plans as well.
With depth wingers like Ryan Hartman, Craig Smith, Colton Sissons and Zac Rinaldo gumming up the works ahead of Baptiste, it’s difficult to see how he’ll fit into the team’s roster moving forward. It’s also worth noting that he’ll require waivers if the team decides to send him down to the AHL’s Milwaukee Admirals.
As for Dougherty, the 22 year old defenseman scored one goal and 12 points with the American Hockey League’s Milwaukee Admirals in 2017-18, his second full pro season. He was originally drafted in the 2nd round (51st overall) by the Preds in the 2014 NHL Entry Draft. It's expected that he'll report to the Sabres' AHL affiliate Rochester Americans for the 2018-19 season.
Read below for the official press release courtesy of the Sabres' website:
The Buffalo Sabres today announced the team has acquired defenseman Jack Dougherty from the Nashville Predators in exchange for forward Nicholas Baptiste.
Dougherty (6'1", 186 lbs., 5/25/1996) has spent each of the last two seasons playing for the Milwaukee Admirals (AHL), where he appeared in 141 career AHL contests. Nashville's second-round pick (51st overall) in the 2014 NHL Draft, Dougherty also appeared in three playoff games for the Admirals.
Before turning pro, Dougherty played one season for the Portland Winterhawks (WHL). In 68 games for Portland, the St. Paul, Minnesota native ranked second among team defensemen with 52 points (11+41). He also spent the 2014-15 season with the Wisconsin Badgers (NCAA), where he finished with nine points (2+7) in 33 games as a freshman.
Dougherty recorded four points (2+2) in seven games as a member of the United States team that won the gold medal at the 2014 IIHF World U18 Championship.