Blue Jackets CHL update

By Aaron Vickers

With the month of December coming to a close, the Canadian
Hockey League’s 2003-04 season nears its midway point. For the most
part, the Columbus Blue Jackets organization should be pleased with the
play of several prospects currently lacing up their skates in Major
Junior. There have been several pleasant surprises from the blueline,
with the strong rise of Brandon Wheat King Ole-Kristian Tollefsen and solid
play from 2003 ninth Round Selection Trevor
. Up front, Seattle’s Steven
has developed into a strong role player, playing in
every situation imaginable. Columbus’ only prospects in the QMJHL, Philippe Dupuis and
Pascal Dupuis have also turned
up their play as of late, hitting the mid-way point of the season on a
high note.

The Western Hockey League

Blue Jackets prospects in the Western Hockey League include Brandon Wheat King teammates Tim
Konsorada and Ole-Kristian Tollefsen, as well as Steven Goertzen of the Seattle Thunderbirds, all selected in 2002.

Steven Goertzen
– Right Wing/Defense – Seattle Thunderbirds –
Selected in the 7th Round (225th Overall) in 2002

It was business as usual for the Seattle Thunderbirds and Steven
Goertzen, as the club remained intact during the 2004 World Junior
Championships. The Stony Plain, AB native had a successful run in the
month of December, registering five points (1-4-5) in seven games. His
plus seven rating leads the club, and his 54 minutes in penalties place
him fourth on the club in that category. With only 35 games played in
the season, Goertzen is on pace to eclipse his point total of 31 last
season (12-19-31) in 71 games.

Team League GP G A P PIM +/-
Seattle Thunderbirds WHL 35 7 13 20 54 +9
Last Update
7 1 4 5 12 +4

Tim Konsorada
– Right Wing – Brandon Wheat Kings – Selected in the 6th Round (168th
Overall) in 2002
A return for injured winger Tim Konsorada is on the way, as he
remains sidelined indefinitely after shoulder surgery. Konsorada, who
had the surgery performed after the Columbus Blue Jackets training camp
in September, has targeted a return date of mid to late January or
early February.

– Defense – Brandon Wheat Kings – Selected in the 3rd
Round (65th Overall) in 2002

Wheat King rearguard Ole-Kristian Tollefsen only managed to participate
in two games recently, returning to Europe to participate in the
International Ice Hockey Federation’s 2004 World Junior ‘B’
Championships. Tollefsen, who was captaining his native Norway,
registered one goal and five points (1-3-4) in five games, finishing
20th among scorers on the tournament, and tied for fourth among
defensemen. Tollefsen, who lead Norway to a second place finish, was named
the club’s top player. An interesting side note, on Brandon’s Official Website, a poll is
running, which places Tollefsen third on Team MVP voting, by visitors
of the site. Ahead of him are forward Eric
and Lance Monych.

Team League GP G A P PIM +/-
Brandon Wheat Kings WHL 37 2 15 17 57 +2
Norway WJC 5 1 3 4 2 +2
Last Update
2 0 0 0 2 +2

The Ontario Hockey League
The Columbus Blue Jackets have a pair of prospects currently playing in
the Ontario Hockey League. Defensemen Marc Methot of the London Knights
and Trevor Hendrikx of the Peterborough Petes are 2003 selections, while Columbus’ second round selection
Dan Fritsche, who may be returned to the Sarnia Sting, continues to
skate with the Columbus Blue Jackets.

Trevor Hendrikx
– Defense – Peterborough Petes – Selected in the 9th Round (283th
Overall) in 2003
Opposing teams everywhere have been on the lookout for the
sniper who goes by Trevor Hendrikx. The Peterborough Petes
blueliner has been on an offensive tear of late, registering five
points in his last five games, three of which for goals. Hendrikx, who
had three goals in his previous 128 games, managed to deliver three
tallies in a span of five games. The Russell, Ontario native, surpassed his
previous season high of one goal and nine points earlier this season,
and is on the verge of doing the same in terms of penalty minutes. Last
season Hendrikx registered 128 minutes in the sin bin, just seven fewer
then he has through 32 games this season.

Team League GP G A P PIM +/
Peterborough Petes OHL 32 4 12 16 121 -7
Last Update
5 3 2 5 19 -5

Marc Methot
– Defense – London Knights – Selected in the 6th Round (168th Overall)
in 2003

Ottawa, ON native Marc Methot is beginning to round out his game for
the London Knights. After starting the season with just two points
(0-2-2) in his first 18 games, Methot, known best for his play on the
defensive side of the puck, has registered four points (2-2-4) in the
following 17. He’s demonstrated his strong play in the defensive zone
nightly, something his plus/minus reflects well. His +24 rating places
him sixth on the club, and eighth in the Ontario Hockey League.

Team Leauge GP G A P PIM +/-
London Knights OHL 35 2 4 6 20 +24
Last Update
7 1 1 2 13 +7

The Quebec Major Junior Hockey League
The Columbus Blue Jackets have two players currently playing in
the Quebec Major Junior League. Mathieu Gravel, selected in the eighth
round of the 2003 Entry Draft, as well as
Philippe Dupuis of the Gatineau Olympiques, selected four rounds
earlier in the same draft.

Mathieu Gravel
– Right Wing – Shawinigan Cataractes – Selected in
the 8th Round (233rd Overall) in 2003

Mathieu Gravel has finally taken a hold of his Quebec Major Junior
League season, and has finally began to contribute regularly in the
offensive end for the Shawinigan Cataractes. The right winger, who
registered 50 points (24-26-50) in 72 games last season is on pace to
put up very similar numbers, only with a significant increase in
assists, and a decrease in his goal total. Should Gravel continue to
play with a hot hand, he could very well catch and surpass his numbers
from the 2002-03 season.

Team League GP G A P PIM +/-
Shawinigan Cataractes QMJHL 34 8 16 24 29 -3
Last Update
8 4 5 9 4 0

Philippe Dupuis
– Center – Gatineau Olympiques – Selected in the 4th Round (104th
Overall) in 2003

Dupuis, much like Mathieu Gravel, has been heating up for the Gatineau
Olympiques. With No. 1 center Maxime
representing Team Canada at the 2004 World Junior Championships, Dupuis has been counted
on to step up offensively, which he has done. Also in a similar fashion
to that of Mathieu Gravel o fthe Shawinigan Cataractes, Dupuis is on
pace to put up similar numbers to that of the 2002-03 season, in which
he registered 56 points (22-34-56) in 68 games.

Team League GP G A P PIM +/-
Gatineau Olympiques QMJHL 33 8 19 27
37 +12
Last Update
8 3 5 8 4 +3
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