Brookbank was the AHL defensemen of the year last season and signed a 1 year 2-way contract with the Blue Jackets in the offseason. He was thought to, at the very least, add some much needed depth and toughness on the blueline when the inevitable injuries occurred. He would have definitely seen plenty of time up with the big team.
With the emergence of Kris Russell and Marc Methot the Jackets were forced to send Brookbank down to their AHL farm club in Syracuse knowing full well that he would have to pass through waivers. The hope was that he'd pass through and he'd be available to recall when needed. Alas it wasn't meant to be.
So the question now is what will GM Scott Howson do, if anything, to replace that depth? I suspect he's scouring the waiver wire now and looking into UFA or trade options to fill that need created by Brookbank's departure not only for the Jackets' depth sakes, but for the Crunch as they were counting on him as well.
In other CBJ news, Michael Peca did not practice today because of back spasms. Peca is expected to play in that 3rd line center position but so far he hasn't been able to get healthy. The good news is that its not his leg that was broken last year that's keeping him on the shelf. The bad news is that we are counting on him to play a key role on this team and so far they've not been able to get him in the lineup because of various other health issues. Remember that Peca is signed to a 1 year incentive laden deal and one of those triggers is games played, so he has plenty of motivation to get back in this lineup.
Both Foote and Modin did make it through practice today and word out of camp is that Modin looked like his same old dominating puck shielding self.
As a formality, Peca along with Adam Foote and Fredrik Modin were placed on Injured Reserve (IR). That moved enabled the Jackets to meet the NHL mandated roster requirement of 23 players today.
Late breaking news from Aaron Portzline is that Kris Beech has indeed been put on waivers after Fredrik Modin practiced without discomfort today. The Jackets will find out at noon tomorrow if he gets claimed.
If Adam Foote is able to go another player, probably Marc Methot, will need to be sent down. The good news here is that Marc Methot will not have to pass through waivers. If the organization decides to send Curtis Glencross however, he will need to pass through waivers. My hunch is it will be Methot b/c #1 he's a defensemen so that will make room for Foote and #2 the team does not want to lose Glencross on waivers.
As far as Beech (pictured left), my personal opinion is that there is a very good chance he does get claimed. If that happens the great depth we were hoping to have this year is getting quickly taken away by these waiver claims.
The positive here is that GM Scott Howson was at his maximum of 50 contracts and wouldn't have been able to sign anyone more unless he moved some other players under contact. With Brookbank gone and the possibility that Beech could also get claimed he gains a little more flexibility to sign more depth...and he won't stand pat. Perhaps Joel Bouchard gets another look at this point?