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Time For The Youth To Lead In Columbus

from Nicholas J. Cotsonika of NHL.com,

"We were a young team last year," Werenski said. "We've been a young team all three years I've been in the League. For us to win against one of the best regular-season teams in the history of the NHL, to go out there and not only win but to sweep them and feel like we controlled that series … Obviously we've lost four big pieces of our lineup, but it's at that point now where us young guys, we've got to step up and fill those roles."

The Blue Jackets still have a core of talented players, including Josh Anderson, Cam Atkinson, Pierre-Luc Dubois and Nick Foligno up front and Werenski, Seth Jones and Ryan Murray on the back end. Forward Gustav Nyquist, who went to the Western Conference Final with the San Jose Sharks last season, signed a four-year contract as an unrestricted free agent July 1.

"I think [the UFAs' departures] had nothing to do with the city of Columbus or our fans or anything like that," said Werenski, a restricted free agent himself, whose agent is negotiating with the Blue Jackets. "I just think they were ready for a change, and that's their right. So, you can't be mad at them. But at the end of the day, these are guys who want to be here. We want to win. We're really excited for next season."

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Filed in: NHL Teams, Columbus Blue Jackets, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Comments

TreKronor's avatar

Unfortunately for Columbus, for the foreseeable future they are going to have to draft and develop any big names that may play for them.  Or trade for players who don’t have a NTC/NMC. 

Striking out on three big UFA’s that were already on the payroll kind of shows that it’s not a destination for UFA’s.  There obviously were reasons those players chose to play somewhere else, but there also apparently weren’t enough reasons for them to stay in Columbus.

Posted by TreKronor on 07/24/19 at 02:12 PM ET

Avatar

I’m there/“here” for time being and it’s an interesting place
for one that’s generally considered nondescript.

I know a lot of former Blue Jackets have settled here - even
guys who only played a year or two.

Bob and Bread are particular cases and Duchene was always smitten with Nashville.

If you’re looking for big city glitz or mountains or the ocean,
or the most historic hockey market, it’s not going to rank high.

But as someone who used to live here for a long time, then spent
16-17 years in NYC, it’s been interesting to see how much Columbus has
become a booming regional magnet city - there’s a vast increase in transplants from all over the country and the city is much more diverse in people who were born/raised abroad. It’s largely kept its affordable, approachable, family-friendly low-key appeal - clean, safe, pleasant - while continually developing more of a vibrant, after-hours city energy and variety.

But if you’re a player for a visiting team and all you see is: airport, hotel, arena, it doesn’t make much of an impression. If you spend more time, there are lots of parks and cool city neighborhoods and attractive suburbs. It’s thriving but it’s easy. If you have a young family it might be perfect. But it’s never going to have that “wow” factor some markets can offer.

Posted by lefty.30 on 07/24/19 at 03:36 PM ET

OlderThanChelios's avatar

Posted by lefty.30 on 07/24/19 at 03:36 PM ET

Nice job, lefty. You provided a really well-painted word picture of Columbus. It sounds like a nice city. Too bad it’s in…Ohio.  smile

Posted by OlderThanChelios from Grand Rapids, MI on 07/24/19 at 06:15 PM ET

Avatar

Ha - one of the reasons I like the Jackets as a second team, Cheli,
other than the fact they’re sort of underdogs, is because their arrival helped to break or at least provide a sports oasis from the crazed cult of scarlet and gray.

You can imagine what it was like as an elementary school kid to arrive in Columbus back in the day with my maize and blue notebook.

Posted by lefty.30 on 07/24/19 at 10:29 PM ET

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Paul Kukla founded Kukla’s Korner in 2005 and the site has since become the must-read site on the ‘net for all the latest happenings around the NHL.

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