Lightning deal with Predators to bring back McDonagh

Predators win in OT on a Ryan McDonagh goal (0:42)

Ryan McDonagh scores his second goal of the season in overtime, giving the Predators the win over the Coyotes. (0:42)

The Tampa Bay Lightning have reunited with a familiar face, bringing back defenseman Ryan McDonagh in a trade with Nashville on Tuesday.

The Lightning sent a 2025 second-round draft choice and 2024 seventh-round selection to the Predators for McDonagh and the Edmonton Oilers' 2024 fourth-round pick.

Tampa Bay previously traded McDonagh -- for defenseman Philippe Myers and forward Grant Mismash -- to Nashville in July 2022. It was a salary cap dump the Lightning had to make at the time despite how valuable McDonagh had been on their back end through Stanley Cup championship runs in 2020 and 2021.

He was originally traded to Tampa Bay by the New York Rangers in February 2018 as part of a multiplayer swap that included J.T. Miller. McDonagh signed a seven-year, $47.25 million contract extension with the Lightning that June and went on to produce a career-best season in 2018-19 with nine goals and 46 points in 82 games.

It was the next two years that McDonagh, 34, would truly excel, though, as he helped the Bolts secure back-to-back titles. He was a consistent presence guiding their defensive efforts while adding one goal and 13 points across both playoffs.

Tampa Bay advanced to the Cup Final again in 2021-22 and lost there to Colorado. In the ensuing offseason, the Lightning had to create cap space and did so by sending McDonagh to Nashville.

McDonagh was a top-four blueliner for the Predators, producing five goals and 52 points during his tenure there. He was also a top skater for the Predators in their first-round Stanley Cup playoff series loss to Vancouver, carrying nearly 24 minutes per night. Shipping McDonagh back to Tampa frees up about $6.75 million on the cap for Nashville.

The Lightning would have targeted McDonagh for more than just nostalgia's sake. Tampa Bay was hampered by blueline issues throughout last season, especially with multiple long-term injuries to top-pairing defender Mikhail Sergachev. The Lightning were 11th in goals-against (3.26) during the regular season and third overall (4.00) there in the postseason, where Tampa Bay made an early first-round exit against Florida.

McDonagh has two years remaining on his contract, taking him through the 2025-26 season.