The Columbus Blue Jackets have activated center Gilbert Brule (pronounced jihl-BAIR BROO-lay) off Injured Reserve and assigned the sixth overall pick in the 2005 National Hockey League Entry Draft to the Vancouver Giants of the Western Hockey League, club President and General Manager Doug MacLean announced today.
Brule has appeared in seven games with the Blue Jackets this season, tallying two goals and two assists for four points and a -2 plus/minus rating. He has missed 39 games due to injury, including the last 21 due to a broken leg suffered Nov. 30 at Minnesota. He signed with the Blue Jackets on Oct. 3 after leading the team in scoring with 2-3-5 and six penalty minutes in six preseason games.
"It has been a tough season for Gilbert from an injury standpoint, but he played extremely well for us when he had the opportunity," said MacLean. "He has a tremendous future ahead of him with the Blue Jackets and we think this move will be extremely valuable for his long-term development."
The 5-10, 180-pound native of Edmonton, Alberta was the most valuable player at the 2005 Top Prospects Game and tallied 39-48-87 and 169 penalty minutes in 70 games with Vancouver during the 2004-05 season. He finished fifth in the league in goals and third in points, earning WHL First All-Star Team honors. Brule was also named the 2004-05 Canadian Hockey League Scholastic Player of the Year. In 2003-04, he was the WHL's Rookie of the Year after registering 25-35-60 and 100 penalty minutes in 67 games with the Giants.
The Blue Jackets return to action Wednesday when they host the Central Division-leading Detroit Red Wings. Game time at Nationwide Arena is set for 7 p.m., with FSN Ohio's Ice Breaker pre-game show starting at 6:30 p.m. The game will also be broadcast live on the Blue Jackets Radio Network and flagship station WWCD-FM, CD101.