At long last, the Ryan Johansen saga is over in Columbus.
After months of speculation, and a few intense weeks since John Tortorella took over as head coach, Johansen has finally been dealt to the Nashville Predators.
Coming back to the Blue Jackets is defenseman Seth Jones in a straight up deal.
— Columbus Blue Jackets (@BlueJacketsNHL) January 6, 2016
Acquiring Johansen gives the Predators a potential number one center that they’ve been desperately lacking. Putting a player like Johansen alongside James Neal should help a sliding Nashville team find their offense, and finally start putting the puck in the back of the net.
It gives the 23-year old a fresh start with an organization that will likely make him a center piece for years to come. Now the question becomes how many years does Nashville sign him for at the end of the season.
As for the Blue Jackets, they get much needed help on defense with the addition of Jones. The Predators had a plethora of blueliners to deal away, and it just made for a perfect match. With Jones, Columbus gets a young stud that could very well become the cornerstone of the backend in the future.
Who knows if this move will improve Columbus enough to make a run to the playoffs, but it should make them a much better team on the ice.
Michael is a former Managing Editor for The Hockey Writers. He’s covered the Buffalo Sabres, along with the NHL in general, for various outlets since 2009. His work has been featured on outlets such as Yahoo, Sports Illustrated and Fox Sports.