According to Renaud Lavoie of TVA Sports, the Columbus Blue Jackets have invited former NHLer Marc-Andre Bergeron to training camp on a tryout. The former powerplay specialist has spent the last three seasons in Switzerland after failing to find an NHL job in 2013.
Now 35, Bergeron was once a deadly weapon with the man advantage, scoring double-digit goals four times in his career. While he could never quite establish himself as a two-way defenseman capable of logging 20 minutes a night, used in the right circumstances he could be effective. In Switzerland, he continued his offensive play, scoring 78 points in 135 games over three years and winning the championship in 2013-14 under head coach Marc Crawford.
The Swiss league is quickly becoming a rival to the KHL for the title of second-best hockey league in the world, with Bergeron playing last season for the Zurich Lions alongside many former NHL players like Robert Nilsson, David Rundblad and Ryan Shannon, along with first overall pick Auston Matthews. Many more NHLers have taken the leap across the ocean to suit up in the NLA as we outlined earlier this summer.
For the Blue Jackets, bringing in Bergeron is probably just to fill space as Ryan Murray, Seth Jones and Jack Johnson are all currently at the World Cup. If somehow he shows enough for the team to keep him around, it’s unlikely he’ll play much of an impact on their team this year.