Has everyone caught their breath yet?
What a day it has been so far in Blue Jackets land, with one of the biggest moves of the NHL summer going down on Nationwide Blvd. this afternoon. In a multi-player, multi-pick trade, the Blue Jackets acquired Brandon Dubinsky, Artem Anisimov, Tim Erixon, and a 2013 first-round draft pick from the New York Rangers.
Columbus traded Rick Nash, minor-league defenseman Steven Delisle and a conditional third-round pick to the Rangers to complete the deal. The third-rounder would be returned to the Blue Jackets if the Rangers advance to the Stanley Cup Final next year.
Let's take a brief look at the newcomers:
BRANDON DUBINSKY | CENTER
BORN: ANCHORAGE, AK (AGE 26)
2011-12 STATS: 10-24-34, 77 GP
ARTEM ANISIMOV | LEFT WING
BORN: YAROSLAVL, RUSSIA (AGE 24)
2011-12 STATS: 16-20-36, 79 GP
TIM ERIXON | DEFENSEMAN
BORN: SKELLEFTEA, SWEDEN
2011-12 STATS: 0-2-2, 18 GP
I know one of the first questions that popped in my mind was: how will the Blue Jackets look as a forward group this fall? Scott Howson has pieced together a mix of youth and veterans, of skill and grit, but there is one trait that transcends through the group: competitveness.
It was high on the list of Howson and his staff to acquire players that compete hard every single night, for 82 games per regular season -- and hopefully beyond.
Here's my early take on the Blue Jackets forward lines:
L1: Prospal - Brassard - Foligno
L2: Umberger - Dubinsky - Johansen
L3: Anisimov - Letestu - Atkinson
L4: Gillies - MacKenzie - Dorsett
You can agree, disagree, be neutral...as long as you play nice. Let us know what you think!