Columbus Blue Jackets: Brandon Dubinsky Traveling with Team

DETROIT, MI - OCTOBER 04: Brandon Dubinsky #17 of the Columbus Blue Jackets controls the puck against the Detroit Red Wings during an NHL game at Little Caesars Arena on October 4, 2018 in Detroit, Michigan. Columbus defeated Detroit 3-2 in overtime. (Photo by Dave Reginek/NHLI via Getty Images)
DETROIT, MI - OCTOBER 04: Brandon Dubinsky #17 of the Columbus Blue Jackets controls the puck against the Detroit Red Wings during an NHL game at Little Caesars Arena on October 4, 2018 in Detroit, Michigan. Columbus defeated Detroit 3-2 in overtime. (Photo by Dave Reginek/NHLI via Getty Images) /
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The Columbus Blue Jackets could see Brandon Dubinsky return to the lineup on the California road trip.

After a hot start to the season following a disappointing 17-18 campaign, Brandon Dubinsky suffered an unfortunate injury in practice three weeks ago. Good news has come for the Columbus Blue Jackets as Dubi is on the trip with the team to California and could play on this road trip.

According to Brian Hedger of the Columbus Dispatch, Dubinsky is traveling with the team and hopes to play during this three game swing. That would be a quick return from a torn oblique that Brandon suffered in practice on October 8th.

The injury originally had Dubi slated to be on the IR for four to six weeks. A rough blow after the hot start Dubinsky had to the season. Now, it looks like he could play either Saturday against the Los Angeles Kings or Sunday agains the Anaheim Ducks.

When Dubinsky returns Torts has some interesting decisions to make in terms of how he shapes the lineup. In Dubi’s absence Torts has slid Boone Jenner over to center and put Nick Foligno on his wing alongside Josh Anderson.

The line continues to be the team’s most physical line and Anderson and Foligno still provide a solid scoring punch. Dubi could slide back into the center position with Jenner and Anderson on his wing but Boone has played very well down the middle.

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If they do put Dubi at center, Nick could either slide back into the second line or down to the fourth line. The second line has started to find some rhythm with Duclair and Bjork on the wings and Wennberg down the middle. I don’t think the team wants to move Bjork down to the fourth line in place of Foligno so I think that line stays the same.

The two most likely scenarios are Dubi going back to center on the third line and Foligno becomes a fourth line winger, or Dubi center’s the fourth line. Either will lead to one of Lukas Sedlak, Riley Nash, or Markus Hannikainen getting less ice time. That also makes it tougher for Sonny Milano to work his way back into the lineup.

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All tough decisions for Torts but hopefully decisions that lead to more secondary scoring from a team that has some solid contributions coming already from it’s bottom lines.