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The Blue Jackets are a complete mess.
After trading the team's only two superstars last year (Rick Nash and Jeff Carter) with not much value coming back in return, Columbus has the darkest future in the NHL.
The lone bright spot for the Blue Jackets is the defensive depth and talent the team has built throughout the organization, which was bolstered by the selection of Ryan Murray with the No. 2 pick in the 2012 draft.
Among the many problems for the Blue Jackets are the lack of a No. 1 center, a top-tier goal scorer and poor goaltending. Columbus has a collection of second and third-line players who won't provide the team with the scoring production needed to win games on a consistent basis.
Goaltending is one weakness that has prevented the Blue Jackets from building a winning team since their first NHL season in 2000-01.
Acquiring Sergei Bobrovsky via trade from the Philadelphia Flyers will upgrade the team's goaltending a little bit, but he's not a young franchise player that the Blue Jackets can build a contender around.
Even though the Blue Jackets usually finish near the bottom of the Western Conference standings, you could argue that their prospect pool is among the worst in the NHL.
Many of the team's recent first-round picks have not become star players at the NHL level.
|Player ||Year Drafted ||Pick
|2010 ||Ryan Johansen ||4th
|2009 ||John Moore ||21st
|2008 ||Nikita Filatov ||6th
|2007 ||Jakub Voracek ||7th
|2006 ||Derick Brassard ||6th
|2005 ||Gilbert Brule ||6th
|2004 ||Alexandre Picard ||8th
|2003 ||Nikolai Zherdev ||4th
|2002 ||Rick Nash ||1st
The only two quality first-round picks that the Blue Jackets have made over the last decade are no longer with the team.
Voracek was traded to the Philadelphia Flyers along with the No. 8 pick in the 2011 draft (which was Sean Couturier) in exchange for Jeff Carter, who was later shipped off to the Kings. Nash was traded to the New York Rangers in the summer for hardly any value in return.
The hiring of John Davidson as President of Hockey Operations was a good first step for the Blue Jackets as they enter the post-Rick Nash era, but the team has a long way to go before it becomes a legitimate contender.