Second Half Storylines
The dominating story line will continue to be the contract situation of both Artemi Panarin and Sergei Bobrovsky. There is reportedly a meeting happening between Panarin’s agent and Jarmo over the All-Star break. It’s unlikely that an agreement will be reached before the trade deadline so what Jarmo decides to do will not only be the biggest storyline for the Columbus Blue Jackets, but perhaps for the entire NHL.
Bob’s situation is a bit less in flux but still intriguing. Sergei has a no trade clause that makes moving him a lot harder. Either way, he is a top five goalie in the league and if it is clear he isn’t going to resign with the Jackets, Jarmo will take a run at trading him.
Cam Atkinson has a real chance to hit 50 goals this year as well. If the Jackets power play, which is second to last in the league, resembles anything close to a competent unit, he has a real chance to destroy the franchise mark for goals in a season.
And about that power play. The Jackets are only converting at a 13.2% so far and that isn’t going to cut it in the playoffs. The Jackets have to find a way to turn that around whether that is through personnel changes or schematic changes or both. If they don’t, they’ll be out of the playoffs in the first round yet again.
There is plenty of other second half storylines that will pop up so stay tuned to UnionAndBlue.com. Welcome back to the Columbus Blue Jackets wagon folks. We missed you!