Thanks to all who submitted questions for the offseason's sixth #CBJ mailbag. Hopefully, we'll get together every Thursday/Friday and I'll answer your questions, so send them to @RobMixer anytime.
Before I begin this week's mailbag, I have to give a shout-out to our softball team, the Stealin' Stingers. Big come-from-behind win this week backed up by some solid defense.
Jason Liebert @jel779
(The Blue Jackets) take the best available player in Round 1, right? No matter if it’s a forward?
The answer to the first part of your question: yes. That is the philosophy of GM Jarmo Kekalainen and his scouting staff, which is to say their plan is to take the highest-ranked available player on their list when they walk to the podium at BB&T Center later this month. I do not have access to their pre-draft list, which was put into order last month during their amateur scouting meetings, but their modus operandi has been “best player available.” It is terribly cliché, but it all depends on what happens ahead of them.
Joe Smith @soulcowboy00
Any info on Matt Calvert?
He is 25 years old, from Brandon, Manitoba and plays left wing for the Columbus Blue Jackets. He was a fifth-round pick (No. 127 overall), likes to fish.
That’s about all I’ve got right now. He’s due to be a restricted free agent on July 1.
Nester 2.0 @NesterWasTaken
Do you think we will try to trade for D in the summer? Or draft new talent and wait?
A trade is most definitely a possibility. I touched on this last week, but one look at the Blue Jackets’ organizational depth chart reveals a wealth of forwards (both currently on the NHL roster, and those coming up through the system) and an opportunity to add on defense. It would not surprise me one bit if the Blue Jackets made a trade to acquire a defenseman using their surplus of forwards.
Is there a chance the jackets trade up to get Hanifin?
There’s always a chance. I’ve seen some mock drafts projecting Noah Hanifin, who is a solid, solid defenseman out of Boston College (and by and large, a projected top-five pick), to fall as low as No. 12 overall in the first round. Is it possible? Yes, and the most recent example would be Cam Fowler, who was pegged for No. 3 overall a few years ago but fell out of the top 10 and into the laps of the Anaheim Ducks. Seth Jones fell to No. 4 to Nashville, as well.
Mandy Gillespie @Mandy43004
When do we get the regular season schedule?
Sounds like the NHL will release the 2015-16 regular season schedule around the same time as last year, which was late June. Look for it then.