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Johnson back tonight for Jackets; Penguins interested?

Mar 5, 2013, 11:41 AM EDT

Jack Johnson Columbus

The Columbus Blue Jackets will have defenseman Jack Johnson back in the lineup tonight when they host Edmonton.

Johnson has missed four straight games, only one of which Columbus managed to win, with an upper-body injury suffered against St. Louis on Feb. 23.

In 18 games this season, the 26-year-old has one goal and seven assists and leads the Jackets in average ice time (26:13).

Whether or not he’ll be 100 percent against the Oilers is another thing. Per Aaron Portzline of The Columbus Dispatch, Johnson would only say he was “good enough” to suit up, and that “we’ll see” if he’s limited in any way.

Johnson also reportedly emphasized that his injury was not a shoulder injury.

In a related story, the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review is speculating that the Penguins could be interested in acquiring Johnson in a trade.

  1. bmscalise - Mar 5, 2013 at 11:55 AM

    I can’t fathom why the Pens would be interested in Jack Johnson. They don’t need any offensive-minded puck movers. And to move him for Despres – a guy who will shortly be better than Johnson, if they actually let him in the lineup to do his thing? Stupid, as far as I’m concerned.

    • hockeywithdrawal - Mar 5, 2013 at 12:15 PM

      I agree….I’m wondering why Bylsma was so set on having Despres stay up at the NHL level, yet when he exceeds expectations (and in my book, he has), he scratches him? I’m hoping they don’t trade him. Depres is even the better deal cap-wise right now, given the headaches Shero will face this summer.

    • grimlock410 - Mar 5, 2013 at 12:43 PM

      I’m not a huge Jack Johnson fan but I have to disagree with you one the Pens not needing a puck moving D man. Latang has had a lot of injuries, and the “book” on the pens is to pressure the rest of their D because they are not good with the puck.

      • bmscalise - Mar 5, 2013 at 1:28 PM

        We have more than Letang. Martin’s best as a puck-mover too. And guys like Nickanen, Orpik, and Depres are competent in that capacity as well. And that’s not to mention guys like Morrow and Pouliot who are primarily offensive d-men. You don’t make a trade like that for the short term, and the Pens system is loaded with those type of players.

      • grimlock410 - Mar 5, 2013 at 5:37 PM

        Like I said I wouldn’t trade for Johnson either but Orpik and Martin have been awful with the puck Martin has admitted that himself. If you asked other GMs what the Pens could use they would tell you one more winger and one more Dman who can move the puck.

  2. steelpenbucs87 - Mar 5, 2013 at 11:57 AM

    So this is another article where it requires a Disclaimer regarding Rob Rossi of the Tribune-Review:

    Rob Rossi will report anything and everything, without back-up, merit, or even a halfway decent source. He is the MASTER of speculation.

    With that said, for the love of all that is good I hope the Pens do NOT trade for Jack Johnson. We need a defenseman to be certain but not Johnson – we need a solid, stay at home guy which Johnson is not.

    • bmscalise - Mar 5, 2013 at 12:23 PM

      Wasn’t he just claiming yesterday that the Pens would have to trade Letang for cap reasons, given Sid and Geno’s deal? Today, we’re looking for a long-term partner for him. It’s pretty funny actually.

  3. bgrillz - Mar 5, 2013 at 12:25 PM

    I agree, Despres has been one of our best defenders this season. Trading him for Jack Johnson would be idiotic. They need a stay at home d man, like Hal Gil was, and Rob Scuderi. I don’t care about numbers from defense. Letang can have all of that, and occasionally Martin. I want a guy with a high +/- and that can take the body.

  4. letsgopens8771 - Mar 5, 2013 at 2:50 PM

    A SHUT DOWN D-MAN, PLEASE!!! Johnson has been Swiss Cheese this season! We need a defensive defenseman, not an offensive defenseman.

  5. chanceoffleury1 - Mar 5, 2013 at 7:45 PM

    The only reason it’s even being brought up is because Crosby and Johnson were best friends pre-NHL. It’s the same reason Semin and Parise were “definitely” coming to the Pens this summer since Semin wanted to play on a line with the best Russian player and Parise wanted to play with Sid, who also went to SSM. If there is any miniscule connection between players, people will blow any small trade rumor into something way larger a possibility than it actually is or ever will be.

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