It’s now been almost 11 weeks since Josh Anderson has played a game for the Columbus Blue Jackets. When he was injured on December 14th, the team announced that it was expected to be a four-to-six week absence. That lengthy period on the sideline complicated any talks at the deadline regarding Anderson, and there may be even worse news in the coming days.
Darren Dreger of TSN tweeted today that Anderson could be done for the rest of the season thanks to his shoulder injury, which may need surgery. Pierre LeBrun of The Athletic (subscription required) also wrote on the subject in his latest column, suggesting that things were “likely headed to an offseason divorce” between Anderson and the Blue Jackets, given the player is a restricted free agent this summer.
Missing the rest of the season and then leaving the organization would be a brutal end for a player who just a few months ago looked like a core piece. Anderson scored 27 goals during the 2018-19 season and was a true power forward, something that seems to be disappearing from today’s game. The 6’3″, 222-lbs winger is a force when healthy and playing his best, but it’s not clear when he’ll get back to that.
Anderson will be an RFA for the final time and is arbitration eligible, a process that would walk him right into unrestricted free agency if allowed to take place. Should Dreger’s information prove true and the forward is shut down for the season, it could mean he has played his last game for the Blue Jackets.