TORONTO — The Toronto Maple Leafs have traded forward Nick Ritchie and a conditional pick to the Arizona Coyotes for forward Ryan Dzingel and defenceman Ilya Lyubushkin.
The pick the Leafs are sending will either be their third-round selection in the 2023 NHL Draft or their second-round pick in 2025.
Ritchie, 26, signed with Toronto in the summer. He put up nine points in 33 games played.
In January, Ritchie was placed on waivers. He was able to clear and was then assigned to Toronto's taxi squad. However, following the elimination of the taxi squad in the NHL following the all-star break, he was assigned to the Toronto Marlies of the AHL.
With Ritchie and his $2.5-million cap hit playing in the minors there was speculation that he would be traded.
Dzingel comes with a cap hit of $1.1-million and is in the final year of his contract. Lyubushkin, a right-shot defenceman, is also in the final year of his deal and earns $1.35-million.
This move was made a little more than a month before the NHL's March 21 trade deadline.
Dzingel, 29, is a seven-season NHL veteran who was first drafted by the Ottawa Senators in the seventh round of the 2011 draft. He played three-and-a-half seasons in Ottawa before he was traded to the Columbus Blue Jackets.
He has since had stints with the Carolina Hurricanes and he made a return to the Senators before he signed this past summer with Arizona.
In 26 games played this season, Dzingel has seven points and 35 penalty minutes.
The 27-year-old Lyubushkin has spent his entire four-year NHL career with the Coyotes. In 46 games played this season, he's tallied nine assists and sports a minus-6 rating.
This report by The Canadian Press was first published Feb. 19, 2022.