At this point, you've heard it time and time again. Jack Roslovic, forward for the Columbus Blue Jackets was raised in Columbus, Ohio and he is someone that wants to stay and play for the Blue Jackets.
This is all fine. The Blue Jackets are going to want to have players that are buying into the organization but none of it particularly matters if they aren't any good.
Luckily for the Blue Jackets, Roslovic was a stand-out player in a season that had very little sunshine in it.
Roslovic was an afterthought in the trade for Pierre-Luc Dubois. For the most part, it was Laine and Dubois who were the players that everyone was talking about. It appears that it was foolish to overlook Roslovic.
He was placed primarily in a role as a center that wasn't always taking face-offs for the Blue Jackets. His point per game status for the team was hovering around one for most of the season before settling in around 0.75 points per game. The only players to truly approach that are Cam Atkinson and Oliver Bjorkstrand this past season. All three were in a league of their own for most of the season.
Looking at Roslovic's possession numbers he was never a difference-maker but he was hovering right around what his teammates were doing all season long. It jives with what we have seen from his time with the Jets that he can elevate his game but it can also be affected if he doesn't have the necessary linemates.
Defensively he is going to leave much to be desired but when looking at the Blue Jackets, they don't have many defense-first players in the lineup anymore. They need to come to a decision on their line deployment to prioritize certain players in certain situations making the coaching decision that much more interesting this offseason.
How he should be used
It makes the decisions that much more difficult this offseason when trying to project where Roslovic ends up playing for the Blue Jackets. For now, he looks like a long-term player that has a ceiling that he is only scratching. The overall priority for the Blue Jackets is making sure that they can bring in a number one center and anchor the middle for years to come.
But does that mean Max Domi or Roslovic is the future at the second-line center position? As you can see Domi was not everything the Blue Jackets had hoped for, he was able to contribute in spots yet was scratched fairly often. Roslovic should be getting those minutes and should solidify that role.
Etching any of this in stone this early is a fool's errand. Nonetheless, it needs to be said that consistency across the board will be key. The Blue Jackets did not have it this past year and getting to a point where players know what to expect on a nightly basis can't be overlooked.
It will be a brave new world without John Tortorella, it will be interesting to see if Roslovic is a player that benefits from his absence.
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