John Davidson’s long flirtation with the Columbus Blue Jackets is reportedly about to pay off.
Aaron Portzline of The Columbus Dispatch says the two sides are close to signing off on a deal that will make Davidson the President of Hockey Operations.
Portzline also reports general manager Scott Howson, assistant GM Chris MacFarland, and senior adviser of hockey operations Craig Patrick will retain their jobs with the team. The catch here is that Davidson will be the boss of all three guys.
As you might remember, Davidson was allowed to look for a new job when Tom Stillman bought the St. Louis Blues and the one team he gravitated towards immediately was Columbus. He’ll have his hands full in trying to help turn the Jackets around as they’ve made the playoffs just once in team history.
It might feel strange to see Jaromir Jagr in a Dallas Stars jersey, but what if he was setting off cannons in Columbus?
Aaron Portzline reports that Blue Jackets GM Scott Howson extended a one-year, $4.2 million offer to Jagr, who eventually accepted a bit more ($4.5 million) with Dallas.
Portzline points out someone who would have a “heavy hand” in bringing in Jagr: new CBJ adviser Craig Patrick drafted him as the Pittsburgh Penguins GM.
Jagr told Randy Miller that he almost felt like Patrick viewed him as “his kid” back when he asked to be traded from Pittsburgh.
“He drafted me. I felt like I was his kid or something,” Jagr said. “I think it would be tough for him to trade me if I didn’t come to him and say it.”
So there’s a fun “What if?” scenario for you.
The Blue Jackets did draft Jakub Voracek – aka “Jagr Jr.” – so it would have been an odd full circle moment.
Instead, Sergei Fedorov remains arguably the strangest Blue Jacket yet.
You have to give the Columbus Blue Jackets some credit, they’re assembling quite the cast of names for positions with the team.
Today, the Jackets announced the hiring of Craig Hartsburg as associate coach under Todd Richards. Hartsburg is a former head coach with the Chicago Blackhawks, Anaheim Ducks, and Ottawa Senators and Richards is more than happy to have him on board.
“Craig Hartsburg has been a successful head coach at every level of hockey including the NHL, has been an assistant or associate coach in the League and was an All-Star as a player, so I feel very fortunate to add a coach and person of his caliber to our staff,” said Richards. “He will be a valuable resource for me, our staff and players, and I am very happy to welcome him to the Columbus Blue Jackets.”
Hartsburg joining up as an associate head coach along with Craig Patrick working in the front office along with Scott Howson gives Columbus some big hockey names to go with their organization. Add in their apparent pursuit of John Davidson to join the team and the Blue Jackets almost seem… legitimate.
Now if the team could find a way to make the names on the ice more of a big deal maybe they’ll have something going there. One other note: Craig Hartsburg is also the former head coach of the Everett Silvertips in the WHL and coached Ryan Murray there. Well isn’t that a happy coincidence!