The Blue Jackets need Josh Anderson in their lineup yesterday.
Unfortunately, it doesn't sound like that's in the cards – nor will it be anytime soon.
Leading up to last week's NHL trade deadline, Sportsnet's Elliotte Friedman reported that Anderson's lingering shoulder issues would be more of a "long-term" concern and he was not likely to be moved. Originally, the timetable for a return to action was 4-to-6 weeks, but we're now two months out from Anderson's last game action.
The cone of silence around the club has only tightened when it comes to Anderson's status.
On Thursday, TSN insider Darren Dreger offered this update:
Expect to hear more on Columbus forward Josh Anderson this week. Sounds like hes done for the season with a shoulder injury that may require surgical repair.— Darren Dreger (@DarrenDreger) February 27, 2020
It hasn't been a pleasant marriage for the Blue Jackets and Anderson over the last few years. Contract negotiations between agent Darren Ferris and the team grew contentious two years ago, and Anderson wasn't signed until the start of the season. He's scheduled to become a restricted free agent (RFA) on July 1, but all signs are pointing to a divorce this summer.
Let's call a spade a spade. It would be a tremendous disappointment for both parties.
Can the Blue Jackets, starved for goals, willingly part with a 25-year-old power forward who scored 27 goals last season? Does Anderson, a favorite of John Tortorella who is used in all situations, really want to get out of Columbus? If one or both of these is true, this is headed toward an unhappy ending that doesn't bode well for anyone.