Posts Tagged ‘johansen

15
Jul
10

Slow and Steady

The news from Blue Jackets land continues to trickle out, but that doesn’t mean there isn’t some Jackets-related news and links to share today, here we go.

As reported this morning by CapGeek.com, the Blue Jackets have re-signed Tom Sestito.

Firstly and most pressing are the two recent Season Ticket Holder Meetings with General Manager Scott Howson, Team President Mike Priest, and Head Coach Scott Arniel. These meetings were held for two nights (Tuesday and Wednesday this week) and The Cannon and The View from 210 were able to give a re-cap on each evening. Here are a few snippets:

Howson also took some “questions” (ie: abuse) on not resigning some fan favorites like Jody ShelleyManny Malhotra, and Curtis Glencross, especially after answering a question about how the team is being built by explaining that they are (like most of the NHL) trying to use the Detroit model, and using veteran character players to help develop the younger players.

I’m incredibly happy for Jody and Manny. We didn’t “dump” Jody Shelley. We traded him to give him the opportunity to play for a winning team after he wasn’t getting ice time in Columbus….. Jody used it as a chance to unlock his potential…and I know it’s my goal, and his (Mike Priest)’s  that once Jody chooses to end his playing career, we can bring him back to the Blue Jackets and keep him as a big part of our organization.

In Manny’s case, he had a hard decision to make, and I’m really impressed – he went to San Jose, took a lot less money that we had originally offered him, and worked his (tail) off. He played very well and earned a very impressive contract from the Canucks.

Glencross?

Really?

Who in the wide world of sports considered Glencross a “fan favorite” besides his psycho-ex-girlfriend who still lives in Columbus for some stupid reason?

I appreciate Howson’s explanation of the Shelley and Malhotra situations. He’s completely right, Jody wasn’t going to play under Hitch, and he did whatever he could to help him be successful in his career.

When it comes to Malhotra I have a different feel. After he was offered a solid contract with Columbus early last summer and instead opted for huge pay-cut to play with the Sharks, he now ends up in a pretty big 3-year contract with the Canucks. Manny is what Adam Foote was, minus all the bravado surrounding his exit.

Fans with a soft spot for former Jackets: I can understand why you may feel the need to be nice to Shelley or Malhotra or Chimera, but face it, those guys were mostly a waste of space on the ice and never won anything that mattered with this team.

The Penguins can have a soft spot for Sergei Gonchar because he helped lead them to the Stanley Cup.

The Blackhawks can look at Dustin Byfuglien and Kris Versteeg with many positive memories.

Okay. I’ll stop ranting. More info from the meeting:

CBJ ticket sales are down – from an all time high of over 10,000 season ticket equivalents last year (1 full season ticket, 2 20 games, or 4 10 games) to about 7,300 this year. Priest said it’s “an area we’re under pressure, but we’re working on it.”

Not a surprise, but it sure isn’t good. As mentioned in the write-up and by the management, winning cures all.

Game Ops – This topic, on how much it sucked, was brought up. Priest totally agreed, and there will be noticeable differences in what we see this year… old items have been retired. They will be trying new things this year, and are looking for people to provide feedback after the games to let them know how they did. New music will be in store as well. (CBJ) are contractually obligated to play some of the pieces from their Corporate Sponsors, but they are looking into changing when those are played so that they don’t deflate the crowd during those rowdy moments.

Great to see that the Jackets are willing to change.

I suggest copying both Detroit and Chicago’s game-ops as a good place to start:

1. They’re loud

2. They’ve got great “situational music”

3. They’re loud

4. They play good music all around

5 They’re loud

John Moore started blogging for the Blue Jackets about his summer including development camp and conditioning. (Official Site)

The Pepsi Power Patrol wants you! Auditions for the 2010 crew are getting ready to get underway… pretty solid website for this. My suggestion? More “un-fake” girls. (Official Site)

A bit about the Blue Jackets Great Unknowns, Nikita Filatov and Ryan Johansen. (View from My Seats)

This year, two of the highest profile unknowns are property of the CBJ. Both Ryan Johansen and Nikita Filatov are two of the most highly thought of prospects NOT playing in the NHL. One of them started last year as a Calder Trophy candidate only to end up in Russia, while the other started last season as a mid-level unknown prospect. Fast-forward to today and you have two players who could hold the Blue Jackets short-term future in their exceptionally-skilled hands. If they both develop as GM Scott Howson hopes, Columbus will be one of the most potent young teams in the entire NHL. If their question marks start to overshadow their potential, then that potent NHL lineup could turn impotent faster than you can say, “It’s been 4 hours and I’m calling my doctor.”

A brief look at the potential boom/bust values of both Filatov and Johansen. How soon might we see either in a CBJ uniform in the NHL… or on their way out of the organization?

Solid write-up on Johansen and his expectations with the Blue Jackets. (The Province) (H/T to @LoriSchmidt)

ESPN is still making excuses for their shitty hockey coverage. (ESPN.com (bottom of the page) and Puck Daddy)

If these two articles aren’t enough to make you seethe just a little bit, then I hope you didn’t spend much time watching the ESPY’s last night. Not familiar with the ESPY’s? Think self-serving, “everyone come see how good I look” on ESPN for 3 hours. If you thought “The Decision” was bad… God help the ESPY’s.

The good news? USA-Canada for the Gold Medal won “Best Game”

The bad? Crosby won best NHL athlete

The really bad? Jonathan Toews didn’t win crap (Gold Medal, Best Forward in the Olympics, Stanley Cup, and the Conn Smythe Trophy)

30
Jun
10

draft wrap-up

This afternoon Coach Arniel, GM Howson, and us regular fans will get our first chance to take a look at the Blue Jackets most recent crop of prospects. Here’s a brief look at all of this year’s draftees.

Ryan Johansen, Center, 6’2″, 192lbs, Shoots Right. Here’s Hockey’s Future and their take on his talent:

Scouts are keen on his puck skills and vision.  Johansen is a skilled mover of the puck and possesses the size to become an effective power forward. He is versatile and his touch around the net will set him apart from the muckers and grinders.

The more I read about Johansen, the happier I am. Here’s something I wrote for UWeekly’s blog about the pick, I strongly believe that Howson didn’t reach when making this pick, and that given the proper time to impress and develop, this pick will only look better with time.

Dalton Smith, Left Wing, 6’2″, 203lbs, Shoots Left. Here are some facts and figures on his most recent season with the Ottawa 67’s:

In his second season with the 67’s, Smith scored 21 goals and added 23 assists for 44 points in 62 games.  He gained a reputation as a fighter, picking up 129 penalty minutes to go along with a +20 rating.  In 12 playoff games, Smith scored 3 goals and picked up 3 assists for 6 points.

Dalton also brings a feisty-side to things:

This guy looks to be a scorer and a fighter, I’m thinking a James Neal type, or what Jared Boll was supposed to be potentially.

Petr Straka, Right Wing, 6’1″, 185lbs, Shoots Left. Here’s Hockey’s Future and their take on Straka:

A speedy winger with great hands, Straka has learned plenty playing under Coach Clem Jodoin, especially how to round out his game and play effective hockey at both ends of the ice. Although he sometimes struggled with his consistency, the reigning QMJHL rookie of the year has a nose for the net and will only get better as he continues to develop and get stronger.

Of course player-agent Allan Walsh believes this was a steal:

As rookie of the year in “The Q” it sounds like Straka has some serious talent. I think it’s interesting to note that with the top 3 picks the Jackets may have drafted a complete line of their top 9 in the next 3-5 years. All 3 players look to have major scoring and play-making potential, but it will need to develop both for talent and for physical maturity.

Brandon Archibald, Defense, 6’4″, 2oolbs, Shoots Right. Archibald is a big boy with plenty of room to grow. He had a solid season with the Sault Saint Marie Greyhounds too:

In 68 games for the Greyhounds, Archibald scored 5 goals and added 28 assists for 33 points while posting 81 penalty minutes.  In 5 playoff games, Archibald scored 1 goal and added 1 assist for 2 points.  Archibald played for Team Cherry at the 2010 CHL Top Prospects Game, picking up an assist on the game winning goal.

Mike from The Cannon had this to say:

Archibald slipped a bit based on his Central Scouting ranking, but the Jackets were glad to scoop him up in the fourth round. He’s a two-way guy, with obvious size. He’s another great blueliner to add to the group of Moore, Goloubef, Weber, Savard and Ruth. He could be a bottom pairing guy in the NHL.

As the Blue Jackets only American drafted, it sounds like Archibald could make a major impact if he uses his size effectively.

Mathieu Corbeil, Goaltender, 6’6″, 186lbs, Catches Left. Here’s NHL.com’s scouting report:

“I was so impressed with Corbeil’s quickness for a big goalie. When you see him you won’t believe how quick he is for a big guy (6’6”, 186 lbs). Very controlled and soft pads, no big rebounds. Corbeil has an excellent feel for the game. He’s very good at controlling his rebounds.”

The Goalie Guild’s Justin had some similar things to say too:

What makes Corbeil-Theriault such an enticing choice is his combination of size and quickness. You will hear scouts rave about how agile he is for a goalie of his stature and how refined he already looks for a 1991 birth year. Not only does he have really long arms and legs, but his upper body is long and he’s proportionally wide as well.

Because of these solid proportions, Corbeil-Theriault is extremely well-balanced and mobile in the butterfly. Being able to move such a large frame isn’t easy, but he makes look effortless and controlled on a consistent basis.

I think there is a lot to be excited about with Corbeil. His size alone will make him an interesting prospect to keep an eye on, I would really like to see him develop into someone who can push Steve Mason in the future, or maybe valuable trade bait someday.

Austin Madaisky, Defense, 6’2″, 185lbs, Shoots Right. Here’s Hockey’s Future and their analysis:

Madaisky is a smooth-sakting defenseman with good defensive instincts and some offensive upside to his game.  He became more confident with the puck during the second half of the season, crediting head coach Guy Charron for his mentoring skills. A very well-spoken individual, Madaisky is also very committed to fitness. He has room to add 15 to 20 pounds, weight and muscle that should make him more of a factor in front of his own goal.

Sounds like another good d-man to add to the corps of up-and-comers, smooth skating and good instincts plus smarts is a good combination!

Dalton Prout, Defense, 6’3″, 209lbs, Shoots Right. Very little information out there about Prout, he’s an older prospect, born in 1991, but maybe that will translate into getting to the Blue Jackets sooner rather than later.

Martin Ouellette, Goaltender, 6’1″, 160lbs, Catches Left. Another prospect without much information on him. It’s nice to see the Blue Jackets putting some depth in the pipeline with Mason and Garon with the big club, Wesslau and a soon to be signed free agent in the minors, and prospects like York, Corbeil and now Ouellette on the way up, there are more bullets in the chamber with a lot of potential.

Here’s the total roster from BlueJackets.com for the start of today’s development camp:

Check out the Jackets site for all the details and practice times.
Go Jackets!



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