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Free Agent Blue Jackets Still Looking For Work!

Who would have thought going into this free agency period that the only Blue Jacket free agent to find work as of July 3rd morning was Aaron Rome?

Rome signed a 1 year contract with Vancouver early on the first day worth $550,000.

Some of the free agents you knew were going to have to wait and see how it all unfolds with the likes of Wade Dubielewicz, Jiri Novotny, Christian Backman and Chris Gratton.

Manny Malhotra has to be feeling the sting as he is still sitting along the wall waiting for someone to ask him to dance. Malhotra has come under the misguiding of his agent and what his true worth is. This is common and now he is going to have to up root his family. If the reports are true that he was demanding 5 years and $10 million from the Blue Jackets, he could be waiting a long time if he has dug his heels into these numbers.

Not many roll players get 5 year contracts. Most are 2 or 3 years. Somebody might pay Manny the $2 million per year if they really need a great face off guy and decent checking line center but I can’t see anyone giving him that kind of money over 5 years.

Jason Williams probably knew he would sit on the sidelines for a little bit and wait for the dust to settle. Somebody is going to want this guy for sure. Big right handed shot, can play center if needed even though he is better suited on the wing and has pretty decent wheels. I still would love to see him on the Blue Jackets but there just isn’t any room at wing and the money he would want probably wouldn’t allow him to be a 4th line center that would be used as a power play specialist. He did make it known that he wanted to stay in Columbus.

Ole-Kristian Tollefsen has been long rumored in trade talks last year and even the year before. There is a market for him as the hard hitting defenseman is a commodity for teams that are looking for a little nasty in their blue line. Tolly has always given the Blue Jackets everything he had even playing with a broken neck for awhile. He is all heart and he will always shoot you straight. I know I will miss him in the locker room as you always got a great quote from OKT and never had to guess what he was thinking.

Most of these guys are going to have to wait late into the summer to see where they will play and some will end up playing in Europe or in the KHL. The only thing I know is that none of them will be pulling on the Union Blue sweater most likely.

Fire The Cannon!

Eric Smith


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