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Archive for February 27th, 2018

Blue Jackets bring back popular, productive Mark Letestu in trade with Nashville


Mark Letestu with CBJ in 2012 By Michael Miller - Own work, CC BY-SA 3.0, https


Letestu collected 43-55-98 and 36 penalty minutes in 233 games with Columbus from 2011-15


COLUMBUS, OHIO — The Columbus Blue Jackets have acquired center Mark Letestu from the Nashville Predators in exchange for a 2018 fourth round selection, club General Manager Jarmo Kekalainen announced today.  The former Blue Jacket was acquired by the Predators earlier in the day in a trade with the Edmonton Oilers.


Letestu, 33, has recorded 92 goals and 114 assists for 206 points with 90 penalty minutes in 538 career NHL games with the Oilers, Blue Jackets and Pittsburgh Penguins.  He has registered six seasons with 10 or more goals and 24 or more points and added 6-9-15 and two penalty minutes in 30 career Stanley Cup Playoff contests.


The Elk Point, Alberta native has notched 8-11-19 with 10 penalty minutes and three power play goals in 60 games with Edmonton this season.  In 2016-17, he posted NHL career highs in goals, points and power play goals with the Oilers, collecting 16-19-35, 17 penalty minutes and 11 power play tallies in 78 games.


“Mark is a very good player who will bring versatility and experience to our lineup.  He can play on the power play, kill penalties and is very good in the faceoff circle,” said Kekalainen. “He is also a person of very high character who made an impact on and off the ice during his previous time here and we are very happy to bring him back to Columbus.”


Letestu spent four seasons with the Blue Jackets from 2011-15, recording 43-55-98 and 36 penalty minutes in 233 games.  He tallied three-straight campaigns of 10 or more goals and 24 or more points, including 12-22-34 in 82 games in 2013-14 to help the Blue Jackets reach the Stanley Cup Playoffs.  He was originally acquired by Columbus in a trade from Pittsburgh on Nov. 8, 2011.  Signed by the Penguins as a free agent in March 2007, he spent the 2006-07 season at Western Michigan University and was named the CCHA Rookie of the Year after posting 24-22-46 and 14 penalty minutes in 37 contests.



CBJ assigns Zac Dalpe to Cleveland Monsters

COLUMBUS, OHIO — The Columbus Blue Jackets have assigned forward Zac Dalpe to the Cleveland Monsters, Columbus’ American Hockey League affiliate.


Dalpe, 28, made his Blue Jackets debut on Oct. 6 vs. the New York Islanders and has registered 13 penalty minutes in 12 games this season.  He has also posted 9-14-23 with 28 penalty minutes in 28 games with Cleveland.  He has posted 12-12-24 and 36 penalty minutes in 140 career NHL games with the Blue Jackets, Minnesota Wild, Buffalo Sabres, Vancouver Canucks and Carolina Hurricanes since making his NHL debut in 2010-11.  The Paris, Ontario native has added 106-107-213, 126 penalty minutes and is +5 in 298 career AHL games with the Monsters, Iowa Wild, Rochester Americans, Utica Comets, Charlotte Checkers and Albany River Rats.  Claimed off waivers by Columbus from Minnesota on Feb. 27, 2017, Dalpe was originally Carolina’s second round pick, 45th overall, in the 2008 NHL Draft.




Jackets bomb Capitals, 5-1 behind four-goal 1st period explosion



Columbus Blue Jackets Post-Game Notes

Columbus Blue Jackets (5) vs. Washington Capitals (1)

February 26, 2018 – Nationwide Arena (17,386)




Goal Scorers
Columbus: PP – A. Panarin (18), S. Milano (9), M. Letestu (9), PP – S. Jones (9), SH – C. Atkinson (12)
Washington: PP – A. Ovechkin (39)



Columbus: S. Bobrovsky (25 Saves, W)                        Washington: B. Holtby (14 Saves, L), P. Grubauer (18 Saves)

Game Summary:

Event Summary:



  • Columbus closed out the season series with Washington, finishing 1-3-0 with both teams scoring 12 goals in the four contests.
  • The Blue Jackets scored four first period goals for the first time this season. The four goals are tied for the most in a period this season (second period, Oct. 17 at WPG).
  • Columbus won at home for second-straight game and the 14th time in the last 23 contests (14-7-2).
  • The Blue Jackets were two-for-four on the power play and are three-for-six over the last two games.  It was the fourth time they’ve scored two power play goals in a game this season (MR: Feb. 13 at NY Islanders).
  • 15 of Columbus’ 18 skaters recorded a shot on goal.
  • The Blue Jackets were 33-of-57 (58%) in the faceoff circle, winning 50 pct. or more on their faceoffs in three of the past four contests.



  • Seth Jones scored a goal and added two assists for his eighth multi-point game of the season.  The three points tied a career-high for Jones (1-2-3, Nov. 14, 2015 vs. WPG) who has recorded 1-4-5 in four games against Washington this season.  The Arlington, Texas native recorded his 100th career point with CBJ on his first assist of the game.  All three of his points came in the first period.  It’s the second time this season (Panarin, 2nd period on Dec. 8 at New Jersey) and the 29th time in club history a player recorded three points in a single period.
  • LW Artemi Panarin extended his point streak to five games (3-3-6) with a goal and an assist.  His 18th goal ties him for the team lead with RW Josh Anderson.
  • RW Cam Atkinson scored his 12th goal of the season (second CBJ shorthanded goal this season) and added two assists for his third multi-point game of the year (first three-point contest).  He has 4-4-8 in his last nine games and goals in two-straight.
  • LW Sonny Milano scored his ninth goal of the season, which is 10th-T for goals in a single season by a Blue Jackets rookie (Karlsson, Johansen, Voracek, Brule).
  • Mark Letestu scored his ninth goal of the season and his first in his return to the Blue Jackets organization after being acquired in a trade on Sunday from Nashville.  He finished with two shots, two hits and won 10-of-15 faceoffs.
  • Alexander Wennberg notched his 18th assist of the season and has 0-2-2 in four games against the Capitals this season.
  • Sergei Bobrovsky stopped 25-of-26 shots and has won two-straight games.  Over the last eight games, he boasts a 5-2-1 record, allowing two goals or less in seven of the eight with a .933 save percentage and 1.87 GAA.
  • RW Matt Calvert (11) and LW Lukas Sedlak (4) each recorded an assist on Letestu’s first period tally.
  • Brandon Dubinsky won 10-of-15 (67%) faceoffs and skated 15:26.
  • D Ian Cole made his Blue Jackets debut after being acquired earlier in the day in a trade with Ottawa.  He finished with two shots, a hit and was +1 on 16:48 of ice time.



Blue Jackets:

Coach John Tortorella | Cam Atkinson | Seth Jones | Mark Letestu | Sonny Milano


Coach Barry Trotz | Jay Beagle | Alex Ovechkin



*Three Stars of the Game

CBJ Defenseman Seth Jones

2 assists, 1 goal

CBJ LW Artemi Panarin

Scored his team-leading 18th goal which led to 4 in the 1st period by the team

CBJ C Mark Letestu

re-acquired center provided spark that was expected with a goal.

*Prior to the game, the Capitals had won 10 of the last 13 games against the Jackets.

*With the win, Columbus has a four-point lead over the NY Islanders for the final playoff spot in the Eastern Conference.

*The Jackets are just three points behind New Jersey for the first wild card spot in the Eastern Conference.



Thursday, March 1 at Los Angeles Kings, Staples Center, 10:30 p.m. ET – FOX Sports Ohio / 97.1 The Fan




Blue Jackets assign Nathan Gerbe to Cleveland Monsters


Nathan Gerbe with Carolina in 2013 By Benjamin Reed - Uploaded by Hephaion, CC BY-SA 2.0, https


COLUMBUS, OHIO — The Columbus Blue Jackets have assigned forward Nathan Gerbe to the Cleveland Monsters, Columbus’ American Hockey League affiliate.


Gerbe, 30, was signed by the Blue Jackets on January 24 and recalled on recalled on February 21.  He appeared in two games with the Blue Jackets and has collected one goal and nine assists for 10 points in 11 games with Cleveland this season.  He began the 2017-18 campaign with Genève-Servette HC in the National League (Switzerland), where he had notched 2-5-7 and 85 penalty minutes in 19 games and totaled 13-22-35 and 107 penalty minutes in 38 games over the past two campaigns.


The Oxford, Michigan native has registered 58-80-138 points and 172 penalty minutes in 396 career NHL games with the Blue Jackets, Buffalo Sabres and Carolina Hurricanes.  He posted four seasons of 25 or more points, including setting career highs in goals and points with 16-15-31 in 64 contests with Buffalo in 2010-11.  The forward later tied his career high in goals and points with 16-15-31 in a career-high 81 games with Carolina in 2014-15.  The 5-4, 176-pounder was drafted by Buffalo in the fifth round, 142nd overall, in the 2005 NHL Draft.  He racked up 71-62-133, 216 penalty minutes and a +43 plus/minus rating in 123 career games at Boston College from 2005-08.




Wheeling, Dealing Blue Jackets acquire offense from Vancouver in LW Thomas Vanek



Thomas Vanek with Buffalo in 2011 By Giants27 - Own work, CC BY-SA 3.0, https



COLUMBUS, OHIO — The Columbus Blue Jackets have acquired left wing Thomas Vanek from the Vancouver Canucks in exchange for forwards Jussi Jokinen and Tyler Motte, club General Manager Jarmo Kekalainen announced today.


Vanek, 34, has registered 350 goals and 388 assists for 738 points with 513 penalty minutes and a cumulative +8 plus/minus rating, along with 133 power play goals and 55 game-winning goals, in 946 career NHL games with the Canucks, Detroit Red Wings, Florida Panthers, Minnesota Wild, New York Islanders, Montreal Canadiens and Buffalo Sabres.  He has collected 17-24-41 and 28 penalty minutes in 61 games with Vancouver this season.


“Scoring goals has been a challenge at times for our team this season, so we are pleased to add Thomas Vanek to our lineup,” said Kekalainen.  “He has been a proven goal scorer in this league for many years, has been proficient on the power play, and we believe he can help our team in both of those areas.”


A native of Vienna, Austria, Vanek has scored at least 17 goals in each of his 13 NHL seasons with two 40-goal campaigns (2006-07, 2008-09), two 30-goal campaigns (2007-08, 2010-11) and six 20-goal campaigns.  He also scored 10 or more power play goals on seven occasions, including 2008-09 when he led the NHL in that category with 20.  His best season was 2006-07 when he earned NHL Second Team All-Star honors after racking up a career-high 43-41-84 and a League-leading +47 plus/minus rating in 82 games.


The 6-2, 214-pounder was selected by Buffalo with the fifth overall pick in the 2003 NHL Draft.  He spent two seasons at the University of Minnesota from 2002-04 and earned NCAA West Second Team All-American honors in 2003-04 before a one-year stint with the American Hockey League’s Rochester Americans preceded his NHL debut with the Sabres in 2005-06.  That year, he was named to the NHL All-Rookie Team after tallying 25-23-48 and 72 penalty minutes in 81 games.  He would go on to spend eight-plus seasons with the Sabres and ranks among the franchise’s all-time leaders in goals (254, fifth), points (497, 10th), game-winning goals (41, fourth) and power play goals (106, fourth).


After combining for 27-41-68 and 46 penalty minutes in 78 games with the Sabres, Islanders and Canadiens in 2013-14, he spent the next two seasons in Minnesota, where he picked up 39-54-93 and 59 penalty minutes in 154 outings.  He split last season between Detroit and Florida, collecting 17-31-48 and 22 penalty minutes in 68 contests.




Jokinen, 34, has 1-6-7 and 10 penalty minutes in 46 games with the Blue Jackets, Los Angeles Kings and Edmonton Oilers, including 0-1-1 and four penalty minutes in 14 games with Columbus after being claimed off waivers from Los Angeles on January 17.  He has registered 187-366-553 and 375 penalty minutes in 937 career NHL games with the Blue Jackets, Kings, Oilers, Florida Panthers, Pittsburgh Penguins, Carolina Hurricanes, Tampa Bay Lightning and Dallas Stars.


Motte, 22, was acquired by the Blue Jackets from the Chicago Blackhawks in June 2017 as part of the Artemi Panarin-Brandon Saad trade.  He tallied 3-2-5 and two penalty minutes in 31 games with the Blue Jackets to raise his career NHL totals to 7-5-12 and 16 penalty minutes in 64 outings.  He has added 9-2-11 and 25 penalty minutes in 17 games with the AHL’s Cleveland Monsters in 2017-18 and has 21-11-32 and 47 penalty minutes in 65 career AHL games.  Motte played at the University of Michigan from 2013-16.




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