There is less than a week until the trade deadline and the Blue Jackets find themselves only 4 points out a playoff spot. It’s great to be in a playoff race but it’s a difficult position to be in at the trade deadline. The Edmonton Oilers and Ottawa Senators know that they are not going to make the playoffs. It’s easy for the Oilers to keep developing their young talent and the Sens are selling in order to start their rebuild. Likewise the Philadelphia Flyers and Vancouver Canucks have it easy…just add a few players to give themselves the best shot at the Stanley Cup. The Blue Jackets, on the other hand, can’t mortgage their future just to make it to the playoffs just to play Vancouver or Detroit and have an early exit. However, they want to make some moves in order to show their fans that they are committed to the playoffs and that they will give it their best shot. I don’t envy the position Scott Howson finds himself in leading into the trade deadline.
Who is the most likely to go?
Jan Hejda is one of the most likely Blue Jackets to find himself in a new uniform next week. He doesn’t want to go but the Jackets have to do what is best for the team and he is a UFA at the end of the season.
Rostislav Klesla has been drawing some attention from some teams in the league.
Mike Commodore is still with the Falcons hoping for a chance to play in the NHL again.
Others that are drawing a lot of attention are Jakub Voracek, Steve Mason, and Mathieu Garon.
Who should the Jackets trade for?
The Jackets need a puck-moving defenseman. Most of their D-men are stay at home and lack the ability to move the puck out of their zone. Like most other teams in the NHL they could use a top six forward that has a natural ability to score goals.
Zach Bogosian would look good in a Blue Jackets uniform. However, I think it would be a better move for the future unless he can turn his season around for the Blue Jackets playoff push. Joe Corvo would be an affordable puck moving defenseman that would help the Jackets in the playoffs and only has one year remaining on his contract for 2.3 million.
Paul Stastny would be a great fit as a center on Rick Nash’s line. I just don’t think the 6.6 million dollar ticket for three years is going to work in the Blue Jackets budget. Stephen Weiss might be another option for the Jackets to give them a little more depth upfront.
The Blue Jackets play three crucial games between now and the deadline. Two games against Nashville and one against Phoenix. The outcomes of these games could change the attitude and plans of the front office. I guess we will just have to wait and see. Either way I don’t expect the Jackets to be too active at the deadline.
Go Jackets Go!
About the Author
Written by Jason Wagensveld