While their teammates play across the pond, several other Columbus Blue Jackets players are skating for the team’s AHL affiliate, the Springfield Falcons. Four Blue Jackets players in particular are having a great season so far, and they’re a big reason why the Falcons are sitting at the top of the AHL’s Eastern Conference and are having their best start since the 1997-98 season.
Ryan Johansen is having an incredible season with the Falcons, leading the team in goals with five and racking up nine points in 10 games. In his first full pro season, he’s already anchoring the top line. Cam Atkinson is likewise having a good season, his second in Springfield, with four goals and eight points.
Tim Erixon, who was brought to the Blue Jackets this summer, is having his best professional season so far. He has 3 goals and 8 points, and he was the lone scorer in the Falcons’ 2-0 shutout against the Connecticut Whale on November 9. By the way, he scored as many goals in that one game as he had last season.
Curtis McElhinney is having an incredible time in Springfield as well. Not only does he have four shutouts to his credit, he was named AHL Goalie of the Month for October. The Blue Jackets were smart to sign him in the offseason. His .949 save percentage and 1.44 GAA are a good indication that he’ll be reliable in net should he be needed in Columbus.
Let’s not forget that Brandon Dubinsky, one of the newest Blue Jackets, is playing in the ECHL with the Alaska Aces. So far, he leads the team in points and goals with eight goals and 11 points in 11 games. In fact, Dubinsky is having such a great season with them that he was named the Sher-Wood Hockey Player of the Week for October 22-28. The Aces are second in the Mountain Division and fourth in the Western Conference.
Now, when can these four come back and put their talent to use on Nationwide Arena ice?