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Columbus Blue Jackets

Blue Jackets Sign John Tortorella to Two-Year Contract Extension

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The Columbus Blue Jackets have signed head coach John Tortorella to a two-year contract extension that will keep in with the team through the 2020-21 season, the team announced on Wednesday.

It makes sense for Columbus, who has experienced it’s most success under Tortorella’s watch, highlighted by a a franchise-best 50 wins and 108 point season in 2016-2017 that saw Tortorella walk away with that season’s Jack Adams Trophy as the league’s best coach.

“Our team has been one of the winningest in the NHL over the past two seasons and John Tortorella has played a critical role in that success and in raising the level of our team’s play since his arrival,” Blue Jackets’ general manager Jarmo Kekalainen said. “His passion and commitment to being the best has permeated our team and we believe will lead to even greater success in the future.”

Columbus Blue Jackets

Blue Jackets’ Zach Werenski Hoping to be Ready by Season Opener

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Columbus Blue Jackets defenseman Zach Werenski is hoping to avoid missing the start of the 2018-19 regular season as he continues to recover from undergoing shoulder surgery earlier this year, according BlueJackets’com’s Brian Hedger.

“My goal, ultimately, is to be there for Game 1,” Werenski said. “You never want to miss time, you never want to miss games, so my goal going into training camp and into the season is to be ready for Game 1.

“If it’s later, like Game 5 or Game 10, whenever that is, I’m going to work to miss as few games as possible and be ready to help the team.”

Werenski, 21, has begun skating but hasn’t progressed to contact drills as he continues his journey back.

“I feel great out there,” Werenski said. “There’s no problems right now. I’m just kind of ramping it up here, trying to get my timing back. Everything feels good on the ice. I haven’t had any contact yet. That’s not until later. I probably won’t do that until probably halfway through training camp, but everything is good. Everything’s on pace. I actually don’t know what my timeline is, to be honest, but I’m hoping to be back toward the start of training camp – probably not Day 1, but as soon as I can be.”

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Columbus Blue Jackets

Penguins To Sign Jack Johnson to 5-year Deal

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The Pittsburgh Penguins are signing unrestricted free agent defenseman Jack Johnson to a five-year contract that will be in the $16M, according to the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette’s Jason Mackey.

Johnson’s new deal can’t be made official until July 1st, the day that free agency officially starts.

The move completes a goal for Penguins general manager Jin Rutherford who said that the club made adding a defenseman this offseason a priority.

 

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Chicago Blackhawks

Blue Jackets Land Jean-Francois Berube In Deal With Blackhawks

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The Columbus Blue Jackets are celebrating the completion of a major trade that was executed on Wednesday.

The Chicago Blackhawks have sent goalie Jean-Francois Berube to Columbus in exchange for forward Jordan Schroeder, the clubs announced on Wednesday.

Berube split this past season between the Blackhawks and the AHL’s Rockford IceHogs en route to a .894 save percentage in 13 NHL games.

Schroeder spent most of the campaign with the Cleveland Monsters of the AHL but made 21 appearances in the NHL during the 2017-2018 season.

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