Player News - Blue Jackets

Date: Team: Pos:

Elvis Merzlikins plans to stay in Europe for the 2018-19 campaign.

Merzlikins had a 2.71 GAA and .921 save percentage in 42 Swiss league games this season. He still has one season remaining on his contract with Lugano, but there was some speculation that he'd try to get out of it so that he could head to North America. Merzlikins put those rumors to rest on Twitter. Columbus selected him with the 76th overall pick in the 2014 NHL Entry Draft.
May 24 - 9:05 AM

Alexandre Texier has inked a three-year, entry-level contract with the Columbus Blue Jackets.

Texier produced 13 goals, 22 points and 38 penalty minutes in 53 games with KalPa of Finland's Liiga during the 2017-18 season. "Alexandre is a very smart, skilled player with a very good shot and extraordinary vision to make plays all over the ice," said Blue Jackets GM Jarmo Kekalainen. "He is a young player who had a very good rookie season with KalPa and we are excited to watch his continued development as he gets bigger and stronger physically." The 18-year-old was chosen in the second round (45th overall) of the 2017 NHL Draft. Texier will spend the 2018-19 campaign playing in Europe.
May 22 - 11:26 AM

Pierre-Luc Dubois has been very impressive at the IIHF World Championship.

The 19-year-old has shifted from center to left wing at the tournament and he has average only 12 minutes of ice time per game, but he has scored three goals and registered six points in seven games for Team Canada. Look for Dubois to continue to produce as Canada faces off with Switzerland Saturday afternoon in a semifinal matchup.
May 19 - 11:16 AM

Cam Atkinson has been playing on a line with Patrick Kane during the 2018 World Championships.

That seems to have worked out well for Atkinson, who has six goals and 10 points in seven games for Team USA so far in the tournament. This is the second time that Atkinson has played for the United States at the World Championships with the other being back in 2012. "I feel really confident on the ice," said Atkinson. "My first time (at the worlds, in 2012), it obviously was great to play for your country, but I was still (an NHL) rookie and trying to learn the ropes a little bit. Now, I’m a more established player in the league." The United States and Czech Republic will face off in the quarterfinals.
May 17 - 9:09 AM

Alexandre Texier will stay in Europe for another year, according to Columbus GM Jarmo Kekalainen.

Kekalainen thinks that Texier needs more time to mature physically, but he liked what he saw from the 18-year-old at the 2018 World Championship. Texier earned three assists in seven contests with France. He posted 13 goals and 22 points in 53 games with KalPa of Finland's Liiga during the 2017-18 campaign.
May 16 - 3:50 PM

Columbus GM Jarmo Kekalainen spoke highly of prospect Vladislav Gavrikov, who is playing for Russia at the World Championship in Denmark.

Kekalainen said Gavrikov "could play on our team right now. He's played in the World Championships a couple of times now, and he's physically mature. But he's got another year left on his contract. So we'll have to wait." He recorded 14 points in 50 games with SKA St. Petersburg this past season. The 22-year-old also had three points in six appearances at the Winter Olympics.
May 16 - 3:34 PM

Brandon Dubinsky feels that a full summer of training will help him going into the 2018-19 campaign.

Dubinsky was limited last off-season after he underwent wrist surgery. He wants to get faster over the summer. Columbus GM Jarmo Kekalainen expects Dubinsky to play with a chip on his shoulder after he was handed a reduced role in 2017-18. "I'm sure he's pissed off right now. I hope he is. I know that he is," said Kekalainen. "He wants to be better. He wants to have a bounce-back year, and I think I'm 100 percent sure he will." Dubinsky produced just six goals and 16 points in 62 games last season.
May 15 - 11:25 AM

Columbus GM Jarmo Kekalainen believes that Alexander Wennberg will bounce back next season.

"I'm 100 percent confident with Wennberg that he's going to have a great year next year," Kekalainen said. "He played through a lot this year with his injuries. There were a lot of painful injuries, real injuries that affected his game that a lot of people would not play through, and he did. I give him credit for it." Wennberg was a disappointment last season with eight goals and 27 assists in 66 outings after he had 59 points in 2016-17. He was replaced by rookie Pierre-Luc Dubois on the top line.
May 15 - 11:18 AM

Pierre-Luc Dubois has recovered from his lower-body injury and will play for Canada on Tuesday against Germany.

Josh Bailey, who is dealing with a lower-body injury of his own, will sit out the contest. It's unclear at this time if his issue is minor like the one Dubois missed one game with.
May 15 - 9:08 AM

Pierre-Luc Dubois is day-to-day with a minor lower-body injury.

Dubois missed Monday's game against Latvia at the IIHF World Championship as a result of the injury. However, he might be available to play Tuesday versus Germany. Dubois has two goals and five points through five games at the tournament for Canada.
May 14 - 2:27 PM

The Blue Jackets reportedly won't be renewing the contract of goalie coach Ian Clark.

Clark has worked with the Blue Jackets since 2011, which means that he's been there throughout Sergei Bobrovsky's tenure with the organization. Bobrovsky has won the Vezina Trophy twice with Columbus and is coming off another strong campaign where he had a 37-22-6 record, 2.42 GAA, and .921 save percentage in 65 starts.
May 11 - 5:16 PM

Columbus GM Jarkko Kekalainen says he was very pleased with the play of Thomas Vanek since he was acquired at the trade deadline from Vancouver.

The Blue Jackets needed to get some scoring at the deadline and settled on Vanek, giving up little in the way of Tyler Motte and Jussi Jokinen. "I think Thomas Vanek did a great job for us, as far as adding some scoring ... we needed another NHL veteran to (put) into the lineup, rather than going to the inexperienced guys we had on our depth chart there, further and further down," Kekalainen said. "He did the job that we expected him to do when we traded for him, and we’re extremely grateful for that, appreciative, and I told him that." Vanek had seven goals and 15 points in 19 games with Columbus, giving the Jackets the extra scoring they were looking for down the stretch. Vanek is a UFA and should hit the open market on July 1.
May 7 - 6:23 AM

Jonathan Davidsson has signed a three-year, entry-level contract with the Columbus Blue Jackets.

Davidsson produced 10 goals and 31 points in 52 games for Djurgardens IF of the Swedish Hockey League in 2017-18. "Jonathan is a fast, skilled player who put up good numbers in the Swedish Hockey League this season," said Blue Jackets GM Jarmo Kekalainen. "He is a smart player and mature young man and we believe he has a very bright future with our organization." Columbus selected Davidsson in the sixth round of the 2017 NHL Draft.
May 4 - 7:30 PM

Zach Werenski underwent shoulder surgery Thursday morning and he will need five-to-six months to recover.

As previously reported, Werenski spent a lot of the season playing through the injury. That could partially explain why he was limited to 37 points in 77 games in 2017-18 after recording 47 points as a rookie. The timetable for his recovery is concerning though. While it's is expected that he'll be ready for the start of the 2018-19 campaign, it's not a certainly. Also, spending the summer recovering might impact his ability to properly train for 2018-19 so even if he is able to play in the opener, he might not be in as good of a spot.
May 3 - 1:37 PM

Pierre-Luc Dubois is hoping to get stronger over the summer and become better at protecting the puck.

Dubois is entering the offseason after a great rookie campaign. He began the season in a bottom-six forward role, but finished the campaign on the top line with Artemi Panarin. Dubois scored 20 goals and 48 points in 82 contests. He could take a significant step forward in his sophomore campaign.
May 3 - 8:04 AM

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