Giroux to Springfield - Lineup set?
The Blue Jackets have announced that LW Alexandre Giroux, who cleared waivers earlier in the week but was kept in Columbus as a possible injury relief, was assigned to Springfield this morning.
That move appears to be a signal that both Matt Calvert and Derek MacKenzie are good to go for Friday's season opener, but kicks open a whole new debate on how the lines for the home opener will be arranged. By my count the Jackets will have 13 forwards ready to go, but also currently have 7 active defensemen. Will we see a 13th forward on Friday night and roll six d-men, or will we see someone in the bottom six shuffle scratched in favor of the extra defender? It seems impossible that the team would not reward the effort of Atkinson, Mayorov, Johansen, or Savard by keeping them out of the first game - particularly for the players who would be taking part in their first regular season NHL game - but you could also make arguments for the veteran presence of MacKenzie or Aaron Johnson against what's likely to be a fired up divisional opponent.
With Jared Boll, Kristian Huselius, Theo Ruth, and Mark Dekanich all starting the season on IR, it seems like the roster is basically set in advance of the 3pm deadline, but how that lineup will be fixed over the next two days continues to be an open question.