Sign in with your NHL account:
  • Submit
  • Or
  • Sign in with Google
Features

Clark Sees No. 1 Potential In Bobrovsky

The 23-year-old goaltender will get a chance to earn the top job in goal for the #CBJ once training camp begins in September

Tuesday, 06.26.2012 / 3:59 PM / Features
By Rob Mixer  - BlueJackets.com
X
Share with your Friends


Clark Sees No. 1 Potential In Bobrovsky

Feeling "replaced" is never easy for any player (let alone a goaltender), and Blue Jackets goaltending coach Ian Clark could see it in Sergei Bobrovsky.

Fresh off a stellar campaign with the Philadelphia Flyers in 2010-11, Flyers GM Paul Holmgren instigated a complete organizational makeover. First, team captain Mike Richards and scoring center Jeff Carter were sent packing in exchange for prospects and draft picks.

Holgmren used the spare salary cap space to sign free agent goalie Ilya Bryzgalov to a nine-year contract, sending Bobrovsky down a rung on the organizational ladder. He had just won 28 games for the Flyers and posted a 2.59 goals-against average, but instead, would be relegated to backup goaltender duty.

Sergei Bobrovsky makes a save on Dion Phaneuf of Toronto. (NHL)

Bobrovsky soldiered on and waited for his opportunity. This past weekend, he got it -- coming to the Blue Jackets in a trade that sent draft picks to the Flyers. One man who is extremely excited to have "Bob" in the organization is goaltending coach Ian Clark, who has watched Bobrovsky's game closely over the past few years and knows exactly what he's getting: a confident, hard-working kid who wants a chance to assert himself in the National Hockey League.

"He didn't have a long leash in Philadelphia," Clark told BlueJackets.com. "He's a skilled goaltender, and I'm certain that this is an opportunity he has been craving. We have high expectations for Sergei.

"The three things that are hallmarks of his game and his personality are his work ethic, his competitiveness, and his athleticism. From a goaltending perspective, you play the most crucial position on the ice and you should, by default, have that level of work ethic and competitiveness. You always need that from your goaltenders, just given the significance of the position."

Bobrovsky can make difficult saves look easy, and on several occasions, was responsible for keeping the Flyers in games. He's still only 23 years old, and in a prime position to make a run at a starting job in the NHL. As it stands right now, the Blue Jackets' NHL depth chart features Bobrovsky and incumbent Steve Mason between the pipes -- and according to GM Scott Howson, the two are on equal footing.

If that's how things shake out heading into training camp, Howson wants to see how the internal competition motivates each of his goaltenders.

"We don't have a No. 1," Howson said. "We will be more than happy to go to training camp - if that's all we do - then those two will fight it out to see who gets the most playing time, and I think that's a great competitive situation for our hockey team.

"It was a top priority to get (a goalie) either in trade or free agency. We had our eye on Sergei for a while, so it was just time to step up and make the deal."

TOP HEADLINES

Follow @BlueJacketsNHL on Twitter, and use the hashtag #CBJ

LIKE Columbus Blue Jackets on Facebook 

SCHEDULE

HOME
AWAY
PROMOTIONAL
 
 
Columbusbluejackets.com is the official Web site of the Columbus Blue Jackets. The Columbus Blue Jackets and columbusbluejackets.com are trademarks of The Columbus Blue Jackets Hockey Club.  NHL and the word mark and image of the Stanley Cup are registered trademarks and the NHL Shield and NHL Conference logos are trademarks of the National Hockey League. All NHL logos and marks and NHL team logos and marks as well as all other proprietary materials depicted herein are the property of the NHL and the respective NHL teams and may not be reproduced without the prior written consent of NHL Enterprises, L.P.  Copyright © 2009 Columbus Blue Jackets Hockey Club and the National Hockey League.  All Rights Reserved. View the Columbus Blue Jackets Privacy Policy AdChoices NHL.com Terms of Service
Please use the feedback form if you have any recommendations or comments.