The offensive struggles in Columbus seem to have come to an end and their most recent games have been proof of that. The key players that were expected to contribute for most of the season are showing up in the box score. The most important part is the shots are starting to hit the back of the net. The Columbus Blue Jackets offense is back on track.
The Columbus Blue Jackets offense is back on track
The Key Players
The Columbus offense or lack thereof has been one of the most talked about points so far this season. The Blue Jackets fell into a long slump after the new year and are finally coming out of it. A lot of this has come from big-name players finding their rhythm again. Nick Foligno is included in those players. The 30-year-old winger has three goals and four points in his last five games. The captain had a 51-point season last year but only has 26 this year and lucky for Columbus, he seems to have found his rhythm just in time. But it is unclear as to how Foligno’s will injury affect his rhythm when he comes back will also be a key factor.
Boone Jenner is another player whose has emerged recently is the points column. While Jenner has not been scoring many goals, he has been helping his teammates get them. Jenner has one goal and four assists in his last six games. Oliver Bjorkstrand it is yet another Blue Jacket that has been stellar in his last seven games. Bjorkstrand has two goals and four assists in those games.
The Blue Jackets power-play has been another big factor in their past couple games. In the last four games, when the offense started to come together, Columbus has scored three power-play goals. The team has scored those three goals on just 14 attempts, giving them a 21 percent average. That was enough to bring the power-play up to 14.5 percent on the season, raising them to just 0.1 percent behind the Edmonton Oilers.
In the last five games, the Blue Jackets have averaged 41 shots per game. There was even a stretch where the team recorded 50 plus shots for three consecutive games. If the Blue Jackets continually keep the pressure on the opposing team’s goalie, they will eventually find success. Even one puck finding the back of the net could spark a struggling player out of a slump.
The Trade Deadline
Even though the offense has seemed to find its way, the Blue Jackets will still need to make a trade at the deadline. There are a couple of players the Blue Jackets could explore on February 26. A good option for Columbus would be Detroit Red Wings right wing, Gustav Nyquist. The 28-year-old is having a somewhat down season in Detroit, but that is all relative.
Nyquist’s down year includes 16 goals and 12 assists for 28 points so far this season. If Nyquist were to come to Columbus, he would be tied for second on the team in goals and tied for fourth on the team in point. Nyquist is also effective on the Red Wings power-play with 5 power-play points this season – Logistically, this makes sense for Columbus as well. Nyquist’s current salary is 4.75 million and Columbus has 4.9 million in cap space. Also, Nyquist will also have another year on his contract after this season meaning he won’t be a rental player. While the Red Wings are rumored to want to move Nyquist, he does have a No-Trade-Clause, meaning Columbus will have to convince him to wave it.
The Columbus Blue Jackets offense has reemerged at just the right time. A lot of key factors have gone into the return of the offense. Key players are finally stepping up, the power-play has made a comeback and the Blue Jackets are getting shots on net. Even with the resurgence of the offense, Columbus has to do something at the deadline. The Blue Jackets should look for another offensive threat like Gustav Nyquist.
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