Sure, the Columbus Blue Jackets stemmed some of the injury tide last season after a ridiculous run in 2014-15.
Even so, their most expensive player still can’t seem to stay healthy. Is there anyway to “fix” Sergei Bobrovsky after years of frequent groin injuries?
The Blue Jackets seem confident that consultant Nelson Ayotte can bridge the gap between the team’s medical staff and those responsible for strength and conditioning concerns, as GM Jarmo Kekalainen noted to the Columbus Dispatch.
“Nelson’s going to be evaluating and improving everything, right away,” Kekalainen said. “His impact is going to be felt right away. He’s coming in as a consultant, and Kevin is staying onboard. Together they’re going to improve everybody’s output, not just strength and conditioning but overall performance.”
Ayotte’s referred to as a “high-performance coach.” The role is being sold as a way to improve the way staff works instead of standing as a replacement.
As much as this is about improving the inner-workings of the staff, let’s be honest; the team specifically wants to get more out of their seemingly fragile $7.425 million goalie.
In that regard, Kekalainen said he wants Ayotte and Bobrovsky to get acquainted in “short order.”
Groin injuries rank among the trickier issues – how exactly do you avoid recurring problems there? – but credit Columbus for going the extra mile to try to turn things around.
For more background on Bobrovsky’s issues and how athletes recover from groin injuries, check out this Columbus Dispatch article from February.