Is Ryan Johansen Our Next Rick Nash?

Dec 9, 2013; Pittsburgh, PA, USA; Columbus Blue Jackets center Ryan Johansen (19) handles the puck against the Pittsburgh Penguins during the third period at the CONSOL Energy Center. The Penguins won 2-1. Mandatory Credit: Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

Last night Ryan Johansen scored two goals against the Philadelphia Flyers. The Blue Jackets finally beat this team even after leading 2-0 only to let the Flyers tie it up late in the second period within 20 seconds. We won and I’m very happy with that. But I was thinking about this young center I called out above. 21 years young, point and goal leader on the Blue Jackets. I Respect that. I keep asking myself where this will lead.

Johansen has been helped by the injuries that have plagued the Jackets so far this year, and has made a name for himself. He had twelve points in 40 games in last year’s lockout shortened season and 29 points in 36 games this year . It seems we can already talk about  a break-out year so far. But does Johansen bring what it needs in order to be our next Rick Nash? “Boooo”, the crowd is yelling at me, “Rick Nash is on a complete different level!”

Wait a minute before you start throwing things. Rick Nash’s first full season ended with 17 goals and 22 assists (39 points). With 74 games that season (2002-03), I really think Johansen can reach the 40 point mark this year. The Umberger, Johansen and Calvert line is one of the best lines on the ice. Sure, Johansen profits from his two linemates, but the kind of goals Ryan scores are goals of a pure scorer.

“And what about the C?!”, the mob is continues. Well, I don’t think Ryan is ready to be that leader. Nash received the C in 2008. Plus, we have other guys who could fill in that role way better.

Well, those are my thoughts about Johansen. Whether you agree, or not, feel free to contact me! I’m happy to have conversation with Blue Jackets fans!

Topics: Columbus Blue Jackets

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