Aaron Portzline has an in-depth look at Columbus goaltender Sergei Bobrovsky, who Portzline believes is the key to the Blue Jackets return to success. Bobrovsky has suffered a slew of injuries and Portzline writes that the Blue Jackets are investing heavily in seeing Bobrovsky return to the level that earned him $7.425MM as the Jackets’ number one goalie. To ensure that Bobrovsky has the proper training while remaining healthy, Columbus hired Nelson Ayotte away from St. Louis and sent him to Europe to guide Bobrovsky’s training regiments. It isn’t a lack of training that has hurt him in the past; Portzline writes that the 27-year-old netminder tends to overtrain. Portzline adds that in order for Columbus to finally see improvement, a healthy Bobrovsky needs to steal some games while Jackets bench boss John Tortorella has to trust his backup goalie to ease some of the workload off of his number one option.
In other NHL news:
- Buffalo Sabres goalie Robin Lehner will sit out the World Cup of Hockey writes the Ottawa Citizen’s Ken Warren. The former Senators goalie has been nursing an ankle injury since the beginning of the 2015-16 season. Sabres general manager Tim Murray was quoted as saying that both the team and Lehner felt it was in his best interest to continue his rehab for training camp.
- Warren also writes that the biggest winners in free agency may have been the teams who waited for some of talented players to come down in price. Warren cites Jiri Hudler as an example, who came in at $2MM for the already offensively talented Dallas Stars. Warren also mentions the Rangers as another winner as they locked up Brandon Pirri to a one year, $1.1MM deal.