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Columbus Blue Jackets

The Columbus free agency plan

From Aaron Portzline of the Columbus Dispatch:

With $36M accounted for, I’d say they have between $12 million and $15 million to spend. That puts them at $48M to $51M, while leaving play room at the trade deadline and for contracts that will be coming to roost over the next couple of summers. Zherdev next summer; Nash in 2010.

But I’ll remind you, those numbers are not coming from the club. President Mike Priest has said all along that Howson will not have a hard cap, that the club will spend according to what’s available.

I can’t say I know what’s going to happen in free agency. I know they want two defensemen and at least one forward, probably Ryan Malone.

Read Portzline’s entire entry from Puck-Rakers here.

We have known for a while that the Jackets want Malone; the question is, does Malone want to play for the Blue Jackets? Also, I wonder which defensemen the Jackets will chase when free agency begins.