With recent action in the past two weeks, here is an updated look at who The Blue Jackets may and may not deal this trade deadline:
Likely To Be Traded:
Vinny Prospal: Prospal’s game has dropped off as of late, and that can only hurt his value. But with his pending UFA status, it is better to get something, instead of nothing for him. A bidding war would mean good things for Columbus, especially if Prospal’s play picks up again in the coming weeks.
Samuel Pahlsson: A once great signing for The Blue Jackets, with the losing seasons, Pahlsson has become pretty useless to them. Pahlsson was described by a few as “the perfect center for a Stanley Cup contending team” And clearly, The Blue Jackets, are not there. He would, odds are, go to a contending team, but his return will not be so great, Blue Jackets would be lucky to get a roster player and a low pick for him.
Possibilities To Be Traded:
Antoine Vermette: A target of multiple rumors, Vermette could be traded this season. A decline in almost every stat category, it is easy to see why he would be involved in a trade. Vermette could bring back a nice return, perhaps another centerman and a draft pick. Like with Prospal, if a bidding war breaks out, it could only mean good things for Columbus. Vermette’s game has picked up a little bit, so his value may have picked up a little as well. But also, with his improving game, he just might be a keeper.
Steve Mason: Once thought of as the goalie of the future like the few before him, Mason has dwindled into a goalie who needs to be dealt. Now why he isn’t in the “likely to be traded” category, is because, you need to find somebody who will take a chance on a goalie with “mental issues”. If they find that right trade partner (maybe a multi-player deal) it would be the best for both Columbus, and Mason. Mason could stay here, but between waivers or a buy out, it is hard to imagine seeing him in a Blue Jackets sweater after this season.
RJ Umberger: Once thought of as the “heart and soul” of The Blue Jackets, has faded pretty fast. In route to a career low in points, it is becoming possible that Umberger could be traded at the deadline. Umberger, unlike the next 3 guys im going to mention, actually has some decent value, and would be great for any contending playoff team. He would definitely bring in a roster player, or a higher round (2nd-3rd) pick, possibly both. When it comes to a player who used to mean so much to the team, you need to put the team first, Umberger is no longer our “heart and soul”
Aaron Johnson: Literally has no use to this team, his time with The Blue Jackets ends after this season anyway, it would seem he would lean towards the ”not traded” side, unless someone is extremely desperate for a 3rd pairing Defenseman, he won’t be going anywhere. If he does go, he’s going to be part of a package deal, him being involved in a 1 for 1 or a 1 for pick swap is hard to imagine.
Grant Clitsome: Last year looked pretty good for Clitsome, this year, not so much. It has been quite an off year for him, and he could very well be dealt at the deadline. Like Boll and Johnson, it would seem more likely he would be involved in a package deal. Unless a team is very desperate for a Defensemen, in which case, he might be worth a roster player (3rd,4th liner) or a lower round pick.
Jared Boll: This one is kind of tricky to say, Boll will need to find a new team after this season. As a Restricted Free Agent, it is hard to see Columbus re-signing him. With Derek Dorsett catching fire, he has made Boll trade worthy. Boll most likely would be in a package deal with another player, or a later round pick, It wouldn’t seem likely someone would take him 1 for 1 in a swap.
Not Likely To Be Traded:
Rick Nash: While the captain has had quite the rumbling on the trade front
after announcing he would waive his no trade clause, it is highly unlikely the captain is moved. And if he was, unless the other team gives up a franchise player and a high pick (too pricey for most GMs), there is no way the captain leaves this team.
Jeff Carter: He just came back, his first game off of Injured Reserve, and Jeff Carter, despite many rumors saying the opposite, did not play like a man who wanted to be moved. Carter showed some great skill on the ice, and it seems that would be hard to give up on this early, he can still be huge for this hockey team, he just needs more time to prove it.
Ryan Johansen: This one, is a no brainer. There is absolutely no way The Blue Jackets nor Scott Howson would think of trading away their future in Ryan Johansen. The very thought of it would be enough to cost Howson his job. Johansen means too much to this franchise right now, and in the future.
Kristian Huselius: With his status remaining on the Injured Reserve, it is highly unlikely that Huselius finds a new home, but at season’s end, he will need to find one regardless, because The Blue Jackets will not re-sign him. Unless he makes a miracle recovery and a General Manager really, REALLY likes him, he is not going anywhere.
Derick Brassard: Talk about a second coming! Once thought to be a sure fire“goner” at the trade deadline, it is hard to imagine Brassard getting moved with his play since December. While his play would be a “Trade Value Booster”, Brassard, shouldn’t be dealt when he is playing the hockey that reminds us all of his rookie season.