Blue Jackets defenseman Jack Johnson initiated a private meeting before last Friday’s game to let coach John Tortorella know of his interest to be traded, but both said Wednesday their relationship remains strong and they can envision a future for Johnson in Columbus. “You slowly start getting a bigger role back,” Johnson said. “Hopefully it keeps trending in the right direction because I know I have a lot to give, and I know I can help this team out a lot.” Tortorella noted, “The onus that falls on me is to try to help him to get better. I’m certainly not going to go the other way because a player is talking about his future. ... Jack loves it here. His family loves it here. So if we get him playing better, and maybe win some games, who knows where it all goes here?” Tortorella said Johnson asked to talk one-on-one before the game against the Vancouver Canucks — their last game before a mandatory five-day break that ended with a practice Wednesday — during which he expressed concern about his dwindling playing time and how it might affect his chances of receiving a major multi-year contract as an unrestricted free agent this summer.
Tortorella insists Johnson wants to be a Blue Jacket: 'Jack loves it here'
Columbus Dispatch | Jan 18