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Former Penguins Winger Alex Nylander Nets Hat Trick; On Fire in Columbus



Alex Nylander, Columbus Blue Jackets

The Pittsburgh Penguins acquired Emil Bemstrom last week from the Columbus Blue Jackets for a conditional sixth-round pick and faded prospect Alex Nylander.

Ironically, the conditional sixth-rounder becomes a third-rounder if Bemstrom scores six goals. There is no condition regarding Nylander’s performance, but Columbus should be pleased so far. Monday night, Nylander netted his first career NHL hat trick, helping Columbus beat the Vegas Golden Knights 6-3.

Nylander, 26, has four goals in five games since the Blue Jackets acquired him.

“Our line has been unbelievable. We’re finding great chemistry out there,” Nylander said postgame. “We have a lot of energy and seem to go the same way every night.”

The Penguins acquired Nylander for Sam Lafferty on Jan. 5, 2022. However, Nylander played only 14 NHL games for the Penguins and scored just two points (1-1-2).

Nylander’s second goal was impressive. He backchecked the Golden Knights’ rush, stole the puck, and finished the play with a wrister off the rush.

Nylander is playing on the Blue Jackets’ third line with Alexandre Texier and Cole Sillinger. He has four goals in five games with Columbus after none in five games this season with the Penguins.

Nylander averaged just under 14 minutes per game in a middle-six role. He’s also cast in a middle-six role with Columbus and is averaging just over 15 minutes. The former Penguins farmhand completed the hat trick with an empty netter.