Acquired by the Columbus Blue Jackets this offseason, Ryan MacInnis has to step it up Cleveland.
In a peculiar offseason trade, the Columbus Blue Jackets picked up Ryan MacInnis from the Arizona Coyotes in a trade on July 18th. Jacob Graves and a conditional 6th round pick for the 22-year-old center with an impressive pedigree.
First off, his father is Al MacInnis. So that’s impossible to live up to. Ryan was also apart of the U.S. National Team Development Program and represented the red, white, and blue at the World Junior Championships.
After his stint with the USNTDP, MacInnis played for the Kitchener Rangers of the OHL for three years. He even captained the squad in his final season where he scored 81 points in 59 games. He added 13 points in nine playoff games before heading to the AHL after the Rangers were eliminated. Obviously, due to no fault of MacInnis.
Since that season though MacInnis has struggling in the American League. He has been with the Tucson Roadrunners for the last two years and it hasn’t been exactly what everyone wanted. In 127 games he has only scored 31 points. Not exactly what anyone, most of all MacInnis, wanted to see.
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In fairness the Roadrunners were terrible in MacInnis first season in the desert. The team scored the fourth fewest goals in the AHL that year and finished well out of a playoff position.
Though his professional career hasn’t been what MacInnis has wanted, he has a fresh start with a new organization. The Monsters will be a very young team with a ton of prospects looking to prove themselves. Sam Vigneault, Eric Robinson, Calvin Thurkauf, and Jonathan Davidsson are just a few of the young skaters that MacInnis will be competing with for ice time in Northeast Ohio.
To add to the already high stakes for Ryan is that his contract expires at the end of the season. He will not only be playing to prove he can make it in the pro ranks, but also for his next contract.
With so many things yet to be determined in Cleveland in terms of the roster, it is hard to set expectations for MacInnis. The biggest barometer will be to see if he was worth the 6th round pick the Columbus Blue Jackets gave up in exchange for the center. That bar has to be a top six forward season in the AHL from Ryan MacInnis.
If not, the Columbus Blue Jackets lost the trade with Arizona and MacInnis will likely be looking for a new place to play next season.