CBJ G17-- Pierre-Luc Dubois and His Return
Just as the holiday season begins, so does the pressure and the Western Canadian teams into the city of Columbus. On the eve of Thanksgiving for the year of 2021, the Jackets' first west team is the Winnipeg Jets, who have become quite the grounds for former Blue Jackets players over the years.
Between Jarmo Kekalainen and Kevin Cheveldayoff, the two have completed three trades since March of 2013, per the GM trade history between them from NHL Trade Tracker.
On March the 10th of 2013, the Jets and Jackets swapped a pair of minor league forwards for one another. To Winnipeg, winger Tomas Kubalik... to Columbus, winger Spencer Machacek. Kubalik had 4 points (1 goal, 3 assists) in 12 NHL career games, all with the Blue Jackets. His last AHL game was with Winnipeg's minor team in 2013. Machacek's last AHL game was with the Penguins in 2014, and is still playing in the German league. In 25 career NHL games with the Atlanta/Winnipeg organization, he had 9 points (2 goals, 7 assists).
The second trade between the clubs was at the 2019 NHL Trade Deadline on the 25th of February, 2019. Winnipeg obtained center Alex Broadhurst from the Jackets for future considerations, everyone's favorite return. Broadhurst last played in North America with the San Diego Gulls in 2020, and is currently in the Finnish league. In two career games with the Blue Jackets, he was pointless, but had one minor penalty.
Finally, we deal with the blockbuster of the COVID shortened season, involving the swap that still impacts the two teams to this day. Pierre-Luc Dubois' returns to Columbus for the first time since the trade, which sent him and a third round draft pick in the upcoming 2022 draft to Manitoba with his father waiting.
The return to Columbus was the Finnish winger Patrik Laine, who is still out with his oblique strain for this game, and also dealing with the tragic loss of his father over the weekend. Prayers to Laine and his family for what they are going through in this difficult time.
Jack Roslovic's negotiating rights was the other part of the return from Winnnipeg from January 23rd, 2021. This trade occurred 10 months and one day ago, and both have since signed their new deals with Kekalainen, and he also signed Dubois' extension prior to this trade. Roslovic is coming off his first two goals of the season in their last game in Buffalo, New York.
PLD is not the only player returning to Columbus tonight. Since being trade at the 2021 trade deadline to the Toronto Maple Leafs for their upcoming 6th round pick in the 2022 draft, center Riley Nash signed with Winnipeg over the summer to a league minimum contract. At his gain, the Jets' lost former Jacket first round draft pick Marko Dano to the Czech league.
In his first appearance against Winnipeg, Mark Letestu, one of the Blue Jackets' player development coaches, will also see his former teammates in the core of captain Blake Wheeler and company arrive to Nationwide Arena this evening.
Looking into the matchup for this evening, Dubois' return has him at the second line center role as centers Bryan Little and Paul Stastny are out for the Jets. Connor Hellebuyck is also speculated to be the starter tonight for Winnipeg.
For Columbus, they will remain with the same lineup as Monday against Buffalo, with the only switch being Elvis being the starter over Korpi.
Projected Lineups via Daily Faceoff
Andrew Copp—Mark Scheifele—Nikolaj Ehlers
Kyle Connor—Pierre-Luc Dubois—Blake Wheeler
Jansen Harkins—Adam Lowry—Evgney Svechinkov
Dominic Toninato—Riley Nash—Kristian Vesalainen
Josh Morrissey—Nate Schmidt
Brendan Dillon—Neal Pionk
Logan Stanley—Dylan DeMelo
Scratched: Nathan Beaulieu
Injured: Paul Stastny, Bryan Little
Columbus Blue Jackets
Gustav Nyquist—Boone Jenner—Oliver Bjorkstrand
Yegor Chinakov—Cole Sillinger—Jakub Voracek
Gregory Hoffman—Jack Roslovic—Max Domi
Eric Robinson—Sean Kuraly—Alexandre Texier
Zach Werenski—Jake Bean
Vladislav Gavrikov—Andrew Peeke
Gavin Bayreuther—Adam Boqvist
Scratched— Justin Danforth, Gabriel Carlsson, Scott Harrington
Injured- Nate Gerbe, Patrik Laine, Dean Kukan, Emil Bemstrom
Players to Watch
Dubois. The former top pick returns home with the pressure on in front of the rocking crowd.
Roslovic. The hometown kid is facing the team that drafted him for the first time in 10 months.
Thoughts? More to come...