NASHVILLE, TN – The hockey world was stunned by a blockbuster trade in January of 2016 between the Columbus Blue Jackets and Nashville Predators.
Columbus, in the market for a defenceman, swapped star centre Ryan Johansen for talented blueliner Seth Jones. Nashville was the perfect trading partner – a team with a surplus of talented defencemen but a need for playmaking and attacking capabilities up front.
Johansen had only a few seasons under his belt at the time but he was already emerging as one of the league’s preeminent goal scorers. Johansen scored 33 goals in his 21-year-old season (2013-14), and then followed that up with 26 more goals in 2014-15. Only 12 skaters would end up scoring more goals than Johansen over that two-year interval. His assist rates were quality, but not nearly as impressive – his 75 total over that two-year stretch was 33rd best in the NHL. Adjusted for ice time, he was 43rd in the league.