2015 State of the Blue Jackets Prospect Pool

Posted by CBJProspects on March 13, 2015
Columbus Blue Jackets, Prospects / No Comments

Hello all! As usual, when The Hockey News’ Future Watch Issue hits my mailbox that means it’s time for my annual update on the Jackets prospect pool. After rising from 24th in 2012 to 2nd last year, the CBJ took a small dip dropping to 6th. First up here’s the Blue Jackets top 10 prospects

  1. Sonny Milano
  2. Kerby Rychel
  3. Oliver Bjorkstrand
  4. Anton Forsberg
  5. Josh Anderson
  6. Marko Dano
  7. Mike Reilly
  8. Joonas Korpisalo
  9. Dillon Heatherington
  10. Ryan Collins

Like last year, I only have a few minor issues with the list. I’d have Marko Dano and Mike Reilly ahead of Josh Anderson, and as most of you know, I’ve been in the Josh Anderson fan club since draft day 2012. The Future Watch issue had this to say about Marko:

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Three Stars and Game in One Picture CBJ vs. CAR

Posted by DerDrache on March 10, 2015
Stars of the Night / No Comments

OK reader, I’ll level with you. During first intermission I was already writing the intro to this write-up as starting with something along the line of “well the good news is our lottery chances just improved.” Can you imagine what this season would be like if this team could start games effectively? 36 seconds in, it looked like we were in for another one of those games where we just wanted to get out of the opposing team’s barn without any injuries but newcomer Rene Bourque notched his first goal in the union blue sweater (well, mostly white tonight) and then Mister Never-Say-Die Hartnell was able to bury the 2nd and 3rd goal to send it to overtime. The recently stalled CBJ power play found its legs tonight with all three goals in regulation coming with the man advantage. Let’s see who the stars of the night were. Continue reading…

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March 2-8 CBJ Prospect Week in Review

Posted by CBJProspects on March 09, 2015
Columbus Blue Jackets / No Comments

Hello, all! Time for another CBJ prospect week in review. Quickly, Monday was the trade deadline with top prospect William Karlsson joining the franchise. I put my thoughts on him here.

Moving on to the AHL (where Karlsson was headed) it was a light week this week for the Falcons with only two games on tap. Starting off on Friday, the team was off to Providence for a game with the baby Bears. In the 4-1 loss, Michael Chaput scored his ninth of the season with TJ Tynan picking up his team leading 28th assist on the goal. Anton Forsberg was a late scratch and Scott Munroe made 33 saves in the loss. The Falcons closed out the week with a game against the Baby Pens who have the hottest goalie in the AHL leading the way. Rookie Matt Murray’s last four starts have been shutouts and he’s closing in on the AHL record. The Falcons allowed Murray to go ahead and set that record with the team waiting until 1:11 remaining in the game for their first point when Dana Tyrell scored the Falcons only goal on a shorthanded breakaway in the 4-1 loss. For the curious, the new record for Murray is now 304:11 TOI, during which he’s stopped 130 consecutive shots.

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Three Stars and Game in One Picture CBJ vs. NJD

Posted by DerDrache on March 06, 2015
Columbus Blue Jackets, Stars of the Night / No Comments

The Jackets headed into New Jersey with a lot of historical baggage. Their record against the Devils this season has been hellish. Dubinsky’s return was certainly welcome although it seemed apparent that the CBJ were embracing the tank by starting the game with Boll on his wing. I’ve got to give it to the squad, they really executed well tonight. Perhaps the best thing to see was that after taking the 1-0 lead early in the game, the Jackets didn’t seem to let up and allow a quick answer from the Devils. Continue reading…

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Three Stars and Game in One Picture CBJ vs. WSH

Posted by The Coach on March 03, 2015
Columbus Blue Jackets / 1 Comment

I am clearly still reeling from the trade deadline. I should have greatly enjoyed this game. It was an old time hockey game, with a lot of hitting and fighting, and was a close game that was in doubt up until the end. I’ll get to my thoughts in the Stud and Dud sections, but needless to say I wasn’t a fan of the Jackets moves over the last few days. I like the Cam Atkinson extension, as it’s a fair price for a 2nd/3rd line tweener, although the Jackets now have quite of few of those type players signed for decent money. Anyway, back to the game. The Jackets fell 5-3 to the Capitals, after battling back from multiple two goal deficits to keep it within one goal up to the Caps empty netter with nine seconds left. The game featured fisticuffs from new Jackets Justin Falk and David Clarkson (sort of), as well as Cody GoloubefJared Boll and Dalton Prout. Also worth noting was the return of Sergei Bobrovsky, who was solid, stopping 28 of the 32 shots he faced.

3rd Star: Niklas Backstrom

Backstrom is really good. He’s played his whole career next to the lightning rod that is Alex Ovechkin, so he’s constantly overlooked. He gets called underrated enough that he’s probably properly rated at this point, but even watching him he is easy to pass by. He is so good without the puck, and his best skill with the puck is his passing. He’s the kind of guy every player wants to play with. Does all the things away from the puck but with it is always willing to make his linemates look good. His all-around play really opens things up for Ovechkin.

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Meet William Karlsson / Trade Deadline thoughts

Posted by CBJProspects on March 03, 2015
Prospects / No Comments

welcome to a rare non week in review post. For the first time since the Nash deal, the Jackets added a prospect through a trade that I think you need to know about. Meet William “Wild Bill” Karlsson of Märsta, Sweden. Karlsson joins the Jackets along with a second round pick and Rene Bourque from the trade that sent a third round pick and James Wisniewski to Anaheim (yes, I put the draft picks first – would you expect anything less from me?).

Karlsson was Anaheim’s third pick in the 2011 entry draft, selected 53rd overall. In the final draft rankings William was the 21st rated European prospect. Hockey News Future Watch editor Brian Costello tweeted that William was going to be the Ducks third best prospect. It’s also worth noting the Ducks earned the second best organizational grade in the magazine.

William was a teammate of Jackets prospects (at the time) Alexander Wennberg and Oscar Dansk on Sweden’s 2013 silver medal winning team and he was a membe of Sweden’s gold medal team in 2012. In Sweden, while playing for HV71, he was named the 2013 Rookie of the Year and collected 28 points in 50 games backing it up with a 37 point season before joining Anaheim’s AHL affiliate Norfolk last season where he collected nine points in nine games to close out the regular season. William has played 18 games in the NHL this season and has scored 3 points (2-1-3) in 18 games along with the 21 points in 35 games he’s earned with Norfolk. Now, as I like to do, I asked for the opinion of people who have seen him play before. First, I turn things over to the editor in chief of hockeysverige.se, Mr. Uffe Bodin:

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February 16-March 1 CBJ Prospect Week in Review

Posted by CBJProspects on March 03, 2015
Columbus Blue Jackets, Prospects / No Comments

Hello all sorry for the delay on updates, here. Either wordpress or my computer decided to crash just as I was about to finish last week’s review and since it was Sunday afternoon I decided to combine all the content and do one of my two week updates.

Starting off in Springfield as we always do, the Falcons opened up against the Hartford Wolfpack. Early in the first, Sean Collins got the puck from a board battle and drove to the net to make it 1-0. The Pack scored next before Dominic Monardo got on the board late in the second. Oscar Lindberg got the Pack’s next two goals including the overtime winner. In the loss Oscar Dansk made 24 saves.

Next, the Portland Pirates came to town for the Falcons annual Pink in the Rink Night. Early in the second Michael Chaput picked up the garbage on a Luke Adam shot but just 11 seconds later the Pirates tied it up. Later in the second the Falcons struck when Corey Cowick scored off a backhand to give the Falcons a lead that would last for about seven minutes before the Pirates would score. The Pirates scored again midway through the third to earn a 3-2 win. In the loss Scott Munroe made 24 saves.

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Three Stars and Game in One Picture: CBJ @ PIT

Posted by The Coach on March 01, 2015
Columbus Blue Jackets / No Comments

A relatively even 1st period led to a terrible 2nd period, which allowed for the Pittsburgh Penguins to take down the Columbus Blue Jackets 5-3 tonight. After getting on the board first late in the 1st, the Jackets gave up a quick tying goal, followed by three Pens goals in the 2nd, and another early in the 3rd. That Jackets managed to score a couple more goals in the third to make it look respectable, but the Pens doubled up the Jackets in shots after the 1st period, and took them 41-25 for the game, were crushed in everything possession-wise at even strength, and the Penguin powerplay went 3 for 6. Tough night.

3rd Star: Daniel Winnik

He’s a guy I’ve always liked and have thought is perennially underrated. He was available this offseason and could have just been signed for pretty cheap. He lasted until late July when Toronto picked him up for a song. After their relatively crappy year, they were able to recoup 2nd and 4th round picks for him. Pretty good move. Would love to see him in a Jackets uniform next season.
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Three Stars and Game in One Picture: NJD vs. CBJ

Posted by DerDrache on February 28, 2015
Stars of the Night / No Comments

Given that tonight was a division matchup late in the season by two teams separated by only a few points, the narrative could have been one of excitement and playoff implications. That was not the case in Nationwide Arena this final chilly evening in February. Both the Jackets and the Devils are at less than 0.3% chance of making the playoffs and for the injury riddled Blue Jackets the hits keep coming. Matt Calvert and Brandon Dubinsky are now each out indefinitely with concussions. For this fan, the story of the night was what would we see out of newly acquired David Clarkson? Did he factor into the three stars of the game? Let’s see below. Continue reading…

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Three Stars and Game in One Picture: CBJ vs. MTL

Posted by The Coach on February 27, 2015
Columbus Blue Jackets / No Comments

The Jackets dropped a 5-2 decision to Montreal, although that maybe wasn’t even the biggest Jackets related news of the day. Shortly before puck drop they announced they had dealt Nathan Horton‘s back to the Toronto Maple Leafs for David “Wendel” Clarkson. I’ll address that trade a bit later. As for the game, the Jackets took on the powerhouse Canadiens, and it didn’t go super awesome. After falling behind quickly, the Jackets evened it up just as quickly, before falling behind again almost as quickly. That third goal was one of the rare NHL goals that are almost entirely on the goaltender. After a brutal turnover by Curtis McElhinney, he then struggled to get set for the shot, and then let the puck go right through him. Not great. The game was never really in doubt after that, until a brief period after Marko Dano made it a two goal game but before the Canadiens iced it with an empty netter.

3rd Star: Marko Dano

I was all prepared to write about Dano bailing out on the first Montreal goal (gotta get in that shooting lane, no excuses there), and compare it to Brandon Dubinsky going hard to the net, scoring, and getting hurt. Was going to be something about about the difference between needing to win and wanting to win. Well then Dano plays the rest of the game like his pants are on fire, scores the second goal to get them back in the game, and even had a play he didn’t score on that was quite similar to Dubi’s play earlier. So now I don’t know what to think. No excuse for his work on the Subban goal, so I guess kudos to either himself for getting his ass in gear, or whatever coach kicked his ass in gear.

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