The Welsh-born, Australian forward was sent down to the AHL.
We’ve all seen a lot of David Perron posts, articles, and segments. Don’t get me wrong, Perron is my favorite St. Louis Blues player. I’m not ignoring his hat trick in Saturday’s game against the Columbus Blue Jackets. In fact, I’m so happy for him.
But I had a burning question: “What happened to Nathan Walker?”
I wanted to answer this for my sake, and perhaps your sake, too.
Not only was Walker the first Australian to play in the league, but he was like the call-up from down-under. I’m not sure if anyone — Blues fans included — would’ve imagined he was a understated center and left winger who suddenly made a splash in the pros. After all, he was drafted 89th overall by the Washington Capitals in the 2014 NHL Draft, but had his ups and downs, including a torn ACL in 2014-15. He didn’t meet the Capitals’ games played requirement so he didn’t have his name on the 2018 Stanley Cup.
So, what’s Walker up to now?
As my coworker, Dan Buffa, wrote last December, the Blues need all the Nathan Walkers they can get. He recorded five points (four goals and one assist) in seven games played for the Blues. Sadly, that hasn’t been the case, and he was sent down to the AHL’s Springfield Thunderbirds. He has been an offensive spark. Sometimes, he’d score two goals, or even better, a hat trick or a natural hat trick.
I don’t believe Walker will stay in Springfield, Mass. for the long term. I believe he’ll return for another stint in St. Louis. Hopefully, a longer stint as I’d like to see his offensive skills, including him taking puck possession in the offensive zone. But that’s not for me to decide as I’m not a general manager, coach or scout. I’m just a journalist and columnist.