Russell. We need his type of player the most. I remember hearing about him for awhile as this guy that is just so full of skill but some were down on him for being small. Being 5'9'', I like it when small people do well in sports dominated by big people.
I'd have to say Boll. He seems to have become more and more integral to our team as the season has progressed. He never half-***** his intensity and drive and he's gotten better all season long.
I'll give an honerable mention to Russell. I really disliked him for the first part of the season, then somewhere around New Years he just started clicking and he's shown the heart and willpower this team needs to keep chugging forward.
Boll--love the intensity and energy he brings every shift...also it will be interesting to see what path his career takes. Does he continue to improve and become more of an offensive threat, or does he become the Jackets "tough guy" (effectively replacing Shelley). I really think he could be a 15-20 goal a season player. It will be interesting to see if he calms down on the fighting.
I'm always happy for Boller and Russell to do well. I met Boll and he just seemed to be a good young guy that is just as happy as can be to be in NHL and he plays every minute. Russell just makes my jaw drop with his skating.
When Lindstrom got his call up this year (against Dallas I think?) I was excited to see him. He and Murrary impress me and I think they are part of our future.
I was and continue to excited to see what Brassard will do; I can't wait for him to have the explosion that just seems to be right around the corner.
In the pipeline I can't decide between Legein or Voracek. I've liked Legein ever since that clip of him as "Vintage" Gino Reda came out... can't get enough guys like that.
I'm very impressed with the Blue Jackets drafting the the last few years. Really looking forward to seeing them play in a few years when all of Brule, Brassard, Voracek, Legein, Pineault, Russell, Marquardt, Dorsett and Boll are in the lineup. Should have a great team.
Boll is a great asset to the team, no doubt. But I hope he calms down just a hair on the fighting. It seems like he's picking a fight every other shift, and it's not always good for the game to be picking fights. But the fact that he defends teammates and is consistently giving 100% puts him right up there.
The other player I want to see in action is Mason, after hearing how hyped up he was on Team Canada it makes me really want to see what he can do in the NHL. And given how Norrena has been performing lately, I'd rather we put Freddie No down in the OHL and use Mason as Pazzy's backup. But then again, that negativity towards Norrena might just be because of his recent bad play.