The Columbus Blue Jackets have made several changes in their front office, adding Craig Hartsburg, Troy Dumville, Mikko Makela and Lukas Suter to their scouting department while hiring Niklas Backstrom as a European goaltending coach, Zac Urback as a hockey analyst and Jon Hamre as a video coach. Danny Flynn, Dave Peters and Jared Boll have all been promoted to full-time. Chris Morehouse, Marshall Davidson, Derek Ginnell and Austin Powell have all left the organization.
One name that might stick out is Backstrom, who had a long NHL career with the Minnesota Wild. The 41-year old goaltender actually played in Finland the last three seasons, even going 11-2-1 with a .920 save percentage for Tappara Tampere in 2018-19. Backstrom appeared in 413 NHL games over his career (just four of which were with a team other than the Wild) but will now transition into the next chapter of his hockey story.
- Speaking of the Blue Jackets, Aaron Portzline of The Athletic tweeted today that Columbus did indeed speak with Mitch Marner’s camp at some point this summer about a potential offer sheet, but he sees “no indication” that the young forward wants to leave the Toronto Maple Leafs. Marner’s name has been brought up in offer sheet speculation for months, but no team has yet convinced him to actually sign one. The Blue Jackets can only sign an offer sheet in the highest or lowest compensation tiers (either over $10.57MM or under $1.4MM AAV) because of their current draft pick situation.
- New Jersey Devils assistant GM Tom Fitzgerald spoke with Corey Masisak of The Athletic today, and explained that prospect Jesper Boqvist will either be playing in New Jersey or Sweden next season. The 20-year old center just scored 35 points in 51 games for Brynas in the SHL, but won’t be spending any time in the AHL this year. A second-round pick from 2017, Boqvist is a talented offensive player who signed his entry-level contract last month with the Devils but also had his contract with Brynas extended in February.