Kent Johnson, top-line right-winger?
According to moneypuck.com, Johnson played on the Blue Jackets top line with Johnny Gaudreau and Boone Jenner for 3:52 at five-on-five. That line combined for this beauty of a goal to help the Jackets win 6-4 against Montreal Thursday night.
While the trio of Gaudreau, Jenner, and Johnson were on the ice together at five-on-five, they registered 0.168 expected goals for and just 0.071 expected goals against. It's a small sample size, yes, but they looked effective on the ice together.
I know the projected top line coming into the season was Gaudreau-Jenner-Laine, but now Laine is out for the next three-to-four weeks, so who's to say that Johnson, the No. 5 overall pick in the 2021 NHL Draft, shouldn't be the top-line RW for the rest of the season, if for nothing else to give him the chance to play with another elite winger in Gaudreau to help progress his development.
Johnson has earned his chance to play on the Blue Jackets' top line. We'll have to wait and see if he continues to receive it.