After being a healthy scratch for the first three games of the season, Tim Erixon was sent down to AHL affiliate Springfield this morning. Just like last season, Erixon will be given a chance to grow and develop with the Falcons. In 40 games with Springfield last season, Erixon tallied 5 goals and 24 assists. If he can go back to Springfield this season and improve upon that level of play, it won’t be long before we see him back in Columbus. Last year, once he was able to crack the NHL roster, he contributed 5 assists in 31 games.
Defensive prospects take time to develop and it is next to impossible for Erixon to improve his game from the press box. Coach Todd Richards expressed his concerns shortly before the Buffalo game:
It is a concern. It’s something that we’ve talked about, when young guys miss that amount of time and how it can affect their game
GM Jarmo Kekalainen echoed this sentiment:
We have to make sure somebody is not just sitting in the press box and eating popcorn rather than playing. Once you sit out for an extended period of time and don’t play, that’s not good
This is the best move for both Erixon and the Jackets, as it makes room for Fedor Tyutin, (who is still targeting tomorrow vs Boston as his return to the lineup) and gives Erixon a chance to play. The Blue Jackets have the potential to build a talented defense made up of both veterans and prospects. How they choose to develop those prospects will make a difference in whether the CBJ defense will be among the best in the NHL. So far it seems both Coach Richards and GM Kekalainen understand the importance of developing defensive prospects slowly.
Tags: Columbus Blue Jackets