Kukla's Korner

Off Season is Slow

With the Blue Jackets out of the playoffs it’s hard to blog when…well there’s not a lot to say and it’s quite boring.

Talks with Manny Malhotra are underway, Howson has made Manny the priority UFA for the Jackets…personally I was thinking Williams first, but again, I’m not the general manager of this hockey club.

Malhotra has been with the Jackets since the 2003-2004 season.  He’s a leader on the team and he and his family are comfortable here.  Aaron Portzline thinks it will be a three-year deal at about $5 million…but again, you never know with these contracts.

The Jackets have tons of work to do this summer.  Specifically a backup goaltender.  I’ve heard people say Dan LaCosta could be the backup, but I’m not sure about that just yet.  He has played in four NHL games.  I would much prefer to have someone with a little more NHL experience but given what Steve Mason did this season, I won’t ever say never.  LaCosta is a RFA this summer so we have to get him signed.  I know Dubie won’t be back with the Jackets.

Steve Mason was named NHL rookie of the year by The Sporting News.  292 NHL players voted on it, so congrats, as usual go out to Mason.

There is also work to be done for the goaltending coach.  There hasn’t been any news about Malarchuk lately and Elderbroom never really seemed to fit with the Jackets.  My guess is that they will bring in a new coach.  I haven’t heard anything about Malarchuk in a while, so I doubt he will be back.

Other RFA’s for the Jackets are Picard, Novotny, Tollefsen, and Methot.  I expect them all to be back, but the only question mark is Novotny.  He only played 42 games with the Jackets this season so who knows.

Now onto the playoffs, almost every pick I have had has lost so I’m not making picks anymore.  But, a Hawks vs. Pens final would be awesome.

I won’t lie, I went through a serious slump after the Jackets were eliminated.  I think I’m back out of it now, watching the Canes/Pens game brought me back.

Filed in: Columbus Blue Jackets, , | Bethany's Hockey Rants | Permalink
  Tags: columbus+blue+jackets, manny+malhotra


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