It’s been a rough season for the Columbus Blue Jackets, and perhaps no player on that team embodies those struggles quite like unheralded defenseman Jan Hejda. The team’s best defenseman will probably miss the rest of the regular season because of a sprained right knee, which must be familiar to Hejda since he’s dealt with similar problems regarding his left knee for a big chunk of this season. The Columbus Dispatch has more.
The sprain is similar to the one he suffered to his left knee Oct.13 against Calgary. He was tabled for three weeks with that injury, and it took him an additional month to regain his form.
Hejda was a plus-43 during his first two seasons with the Blue Jackets. This season, however, has been a struggle as the knee problem, coupled with rotating blue-line partners, have not allowed him to find his comfort zone. He entered last night’s game minus-14 with three goals and 10 assists.
Perhaps it just isn’t the Blue Jackets’ year. Hejda and fellow blue line leader Rostislav Klesla have been fighting injuries for most of the season, leaving the team with an unexpectedly porous defense. When you add those issues to the resounding crash of Steve Mason and the (in my opinion, misguided) firing of coach Ken Hitchcock, things are looking awfully grim for a franchise that just last year looked to finally be on the rise.
The Avalanche will be throwing a bunch of different looks at us this season.
Having already released specialized “Mile High” jerseys for February’s Stadium Series game, the Avs unveiled new third sweaters on Friday — less than 24 hours after a bitter 5-4 home loss to Minnesota in their season opener.
(Guess Colorado wanted to send out some good vibes after blowing a 4-1 third-period lead.)
While undoubtedly exciting for the organization, the release of these new thirds isn’t taking anybody by surprise. Last month, several websites published leaked images of Colorado’s and Anaheim’s third jerseys, so the design has been in the public eye for several weeks.
The Avs will debut these new thirds on Oct. 24, in a Saturday night tilt against Columbus.
Related: Roy explains why he didn’t call time out
Hey, remember in June when the NHLPA voted to keep the five-percent growth factor in spite of increasing worries about escrow?
Well, here’s why that decision was a significant one, via TSN’s Frank Seravalli:
With early revenue projections in place, the NHL and NHLPA set the escrow withholding rate for players at 16 per cent for the first quarter of the season on Thursday.
That means every player will have 16 per cent of earnings deducted from their paycheque and put aside until after all of this season’s hockey-related revenue is counted to ensure a perfect 50-50 revenue split with owners.
Now, this doesn’t mean that the players will definitely lose 16 percent of their salaries. Typically, they receive refunds when all the accounting is done.
Still, 16 percent is a good-sized chunk to withhold. They won’t be thrilled about it.
Related: To understand escrow, consider Duncan Keith