The Columbus Blue Jackets have a bright future. Sergei Bobrovsky had a stellar season and looks continue is franchise play. Ryan Johansen played up to his potential and now is considered a superstar. Brandon Dubinsky plays with the passion Columbus has been waiting on for years. The list goes on and on.
With so much optimism going into the 2014-2015 campaign, there are still uncertainties that linger in the capital city. What was once solid, a given, is now an uncomfortable question: What kind of player will Nathan Horton be?
Last season was a strange one for the winger. After all of the excitement that came along with his move from Boston, Nathan Horton had to get shoulder surgery. The Blue Jackets, stumbling out of the gate, would have to wait until January to see Horton’s services on the ice.
It started off with a bang.
In his first game with his new hockey club, # 8 scored. The first of many to come….right? Well, not quite. He went on to light the lamp just 4 more times that season before being bit by the injury bug once again.
But you know all of that. You know how the man who made the biggest splash in off season news struggled, mightily. He was out of sync with his game, out of rhythm with his new teammates. You know all of this.
What we don’t know is what the future holds for Nathan Horton and the Columbus Blue Jackets. What kind of player is he going to be? We all just expect him to come flying out, tallying goals and becoming a force of nature on the ice. But is that plausible?I certainly don’t want to be Debbie downer over here but Horton only had 13 goals in the 2012-2013 season and hasn’t hit the 20 goal mark since 2010-2011. And he’s not getting older. Sure he’s still in his 20′s, but he’s a year out from 30 and once you hit your 30′s in professional sports, you tend to age in dog years.
I’m not panicking. That would be absurd. Hey, I even thing the Nathan will play on the top line, at least to start the season. And if things go right, he’ll be a stud. I’m only reminding everybody to not jump in the water. My toes are icy but I’m not jumping until everybody assures me that the water is fine, that Nathan Horton will be okay.