Columbus Blue Jackets At The 2011 NHL Trade Deadline: Rumors, Needs And Expectations

The Columbus Blue Jackets’ season has literally been up and down, almost with a freakish regularity. If you look at their game log, you’ll see alternating streaks of good and bad -- and most of this syncs up with the statistics of their goaltending.

Even though the Jackets seemed left for dead a few weeks ago, they’ve entered that proverbial "find a way to win" mode, which means that they’re clawing their way back into the jumble that is the Western Conference. That doesn’t necessarily mean that they’ll be buyers or sellers, though.

GM Scott Howson has encountered criticism after consecutive seasons where promising first halves have faltered; he faces a tenuous situation -- make a splashy deal to create waves through the market or gather what assets he can.

Status: On The Bubble. Like many Western Conference teams, a losing streak in the week before the deadline could dictate what moves are made.

Need: Scoring by committee, a power play quarterback, and something to make Steve Mason consistent.

Players On The Block: Rostislav Klesla ($2.95 million), Jan Hejda ($2 million), Mike Commodore ($1.895 million, re-entry waivers)

Prediction: The Jackets move Jan Hejda for some forward depth and no one takes Mike Commodore.

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This story was written by Mike Chen.

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