It's no secret that Blue Jackets defenseman Seth Jones is one of the best in the National Hockey League at his position.
While we anxiously wait to see him play again, here are four reasons Jones has been such a force recently in a Columbus uniform:
Jones finished second for the Blue Jackets during each of the past two campaigns in assists, combining for 78(excluding the playoffs)–only trailing Artemi Panarin each respective year. Officially, that makes Jones the top returning playmaker for Columbus in 2019.
Eating up the minutes
Jones has led all CBJ defensemen in average time on ice during the past three years, each time leading to playoff berths. Fear not if you were worried of a downward trend. Jones continues to get more and more playing time as he nears his prime, turning 25 exactly one day before the season opener against the Toronto Maple Leafs at Nationwide Arena.
Leader of the PK
No team allowed fewer power-play goals in the 2018-19 season than the Blue Jackets–holding their opponents to only 30 goals while on the man advantage. Who led all Columbus skaters with over 171 minutes of ice time on the penalty kill? That would be Seth Jones, of course.
Coming through in the clutch moments
Jones may not be an elite goal scorer when compared to his defensive peers, but he sure has found a way to bury the biscuit at opportune times.
During the previous two playoff appearances, Jones had a memorable goal from the get-go.
In the first game against the Washington Capitals during the first round of the 2018 Stanley Cup Playoffs, Jones scored a game-tying goal while on the man advantage with less than five minutes to play to tie the score at three apiece before an overtime road victory.
The following year, in the first game of what went on to be a first-round sweep of the Tampa Bay Lightning, Jones scored the game-winning goal, which also came on the man advantage in a 4-3 road victory.
Overtime was also a time to shine for Jones during the 2018-19 season, who scored three goals in the extra session–a number only twelve other players in the league either matched or surpassed.
However you want to slice it, Jones is a franchise defenseman who will continue to be a key contributor to the overall success of the Blue Jackets.
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