4. Columbus, Nikolai Zherdev, RW, CSKA Moscow (Russia): When he came into the league, his obvious skills could be breathtaking. He was up and down in his first three seasons, scoring 26 goals in 2007-08 but chafing under Jackets coach Ken Hitchcock. He went to the Rangers in July with Dan Fritsche for defensemen Christian Backman and Fedor Tyutin, and if the Rangers get more out of him, the deal could turn out to be embarrassing. He'll get his first chance back at Columbus on Friday night.
1. Columbus, Rick Nash, LW, London (OHL): The Blue Jackets got this one right, although it wasn't as if they had to rack their brains to make this choice. The big winger is off to another fast start this season, too.
3. Tampa Bay: Alexander Svitov, C, Avangard Omsk (Russia): Traded to Columbus in early 2004, he played the 2005-06 season in Russia, returned to the Blue Jackets for the following season, then pulled off the feat of signing with both Columbus and Avangard Omsk for last season. He's playing in Russia and is under NHL suspension.
4. Columbus, Rostislav Klesla, D, Brampton (OHL): The genuine article as a physical defenseman, the Blue Jackets got this one right, too.
5. New York Islanders, Raffi Torres, LW, Brampton (OHL): Torres played only 17 games for the Isles before being traded to Edmonton, where he showed flashes, including when he had 27 goals in 2005-06. He's been injury-prone of late, missing the latter half of last season with the Oilers with a knee injury. After going to Columbus in a July trade, he is out with a separated shoulder.
Burnside also takes a look at lines that are clicking (of course no mention of Nash or Huselus) and takes a head scratching shot at Hitch:
After opening with two wins in Europe with Scott Gomez centering Chris Drury and Markus Naslund, the New York Rangers have tinkered with their "top" lines but haven't suffered in the standings. That's because Brandon Dubinsky, Nikolai Zherdev (who came over from Columbus, where he was too inconsistent for coach Ken Hitchcock) and the surprising Aaron Voros have provided consistent production for the Rangers (6-2-1). At 6-foot-3 and 215 pounds, Voros has been the biggest surprise since his offseason arrival from Minnesota (five goals, four assists in nine games), providing a nice compliment to the skilled Zherdev (five points).
You know I don't think Hitch nor Howson get nearly enough credit for turning this guy around last season. Two seasons ago the Jackets wouldn't have returned anything close to a Tyutin for him.
..that and its still waaay to early to judge that trade although I freely admit Tyutin has struggled early in his Jackets career.
Just a quick update from the glass explosion last night. According to the Globe & Mail, Apparently two people were cut on their faces and taken to a nearby hospital for further treatment.
Here are a couple of quotes from Lucic and Van Ryn:
"I looked over to see the two (fans). They had their face down," Lucic said after the Bruins' 4-2 loss to the Toronto Maple Leafs. "I was just hoping they were all right. They pay good money to have seats like that, and that's the last thing you want to see happen to a fan."
"I'm still itchy. It seems like it's caught everywhere on me," Van Ryn said. "I don't know, it just exploded. I feel bad for the lady that got cut."