In a year that at the very least was (and by and large still is) an organizational reset for the Columbus Blue Jackets, the team has performed about as expected. With the youngest roster in the NHL the Blue Jackets have looked really good at times and really bad at times, growing pains are not fun but needed. As the 2022 NHL trade deadline is coming, who could the team move? Let’s dive in.
Armed with some very good young prospects and a boat load of 2022 draft picks, the Blue Jackets are in good shape. Can they get better? Yes. So for an organization in good shape, how do they get better? For starters only defensemen Zach Werenski and Jake Bean are signed through next season. Andrew Peeke and Adam Boqvist should be part of the future but another core defensive player should be added.
With top prospects Kent Johnson and Kirill Merchenko expected to compete for a roster spot in next fall’s training camp the offense will improve even more. Still Max Domi, who started the season slowly while coming back from offseason shoulder surgery is on an expiring contract and could be moved for either a draft pick or prospect.
With the Blue Jackets organization boasting one of the best goalie pipelines in the NHL, rather than let him walk for nothing, look for the team to trade Joonas Korpisalo.
The Columbus Blue Jackets are a team on the rise, even though they have had an up and down season. As I mentioned growing pains are not fun but needed. The Blue Jackets when they have played well have shown what they will be once they gain more consistency.
In order to gain more consistency rough patch’s must be navigated through. Brad Larsen in his first season as a head coach has done a pretty good job with this while developing young players. It is not an easy task and Larsen has done well so far.
The future is bright in Columbus. The fans (5th line) have shown they will show up for games as long as progress is being made. The Blue Jackets are in the top 15 in NHL attendance.