Hard work pays off for Matt Calvert

A two-year contract extension signed today keeps the 23-year-old winger in the fold

Tuesday, 04.23.2013 / 1:30 PM / Features
By Rob Mixer  - BlueJackets.com

Bearing a carefully-constructed splint on his right hand to help mend a broken finger, Matt Calvert was asked about its red and blue color.

“It’s Jackets fever across the city,” he replied with a smile.

And even though the past couple of days have not been easy for the 23-year-old, today was a proud and happy day for a kid who has come along way from the Canadian prairie city of Brandon, Manitoba. He signed a new two-year contract with the Blue Jackets this morning, keeping him in the fold and part of the future for a team that has a bright one.

Energetic and consistent play in his third professional season has caught the attention of many people around the NHL, and Calvert has been an integral piece in the Blue Jackets’ playoff run that’s still raging on in the season’s final week.

Though it’s a playoff push he is forced to sit and watch after his recent injury (admitting to not being the best ‘fan’), Calvert was most at ease knowing this group of teammates is one he will continue to be part of in the coming years.

“It’s where I want to be, and to know I’ll be here with this group of guys for the next two years is really exciting,” Calvert said.

“We’re building something special here and it makes it that much more exciting." - Matt Calvert, on his contract extension

“We’re building something special here and it makes it that much more excitingI’m ready to move forward and hopefully the boys can get into the playoffs here.

“It’s a great group of guys here, not only on the ice but off the ice too. We have a lot of fun together, we’re really starting to mesh together and there’s great chemistry in the room, so it’s fun and exciting to know you have a little security with a one-way contract. That’s the goal coming off your entry level deal; you want to be with the big club all season. There’s a lot more work to be done here and hopefully we can get back in the playoffs and I can play again this year.”

The one-way deal is especially important to Calvert, who burst on to the NHL scene with Columbus in 2011 during the club’s last flirtation with the postseason. He notched a hat trick against the Phoenix Coyotes on Feb. 25 of that year and scored some important goals to get the Jackets in the mix during the season’s final month.

But his sophomore season was a much different experience, and while he began the year with the Blue Jackets, Calvert struggled to find his game in the early part of 2011-12 and was assigned to Springfield (AHL) to get his confidence back. It proved to be a beneficial move, as Calvert was one of the Falcons’ best offensive players with 17 goals and 36 points in 56 games.

He used that strong finish to thrust himself into another big opportunity in Springfield to start this season during the NHL lockout. The Falcons – currently one of the top teams in the AHL – started fast out of the gate and Calvert was a pace-setter in the scoring department. His 10 goals and 21 points in 34 games with Springfield this season also gave him a big boost when recalled by Columbus in January.

“Matty’s a guy that young kids can look up to and it just shows (what happens when) you never give up,” center Ryan Johansen said. “He was a smaller kid growing up and was always hearing ‘you’re too small, you can’t play’ but he didn’t care. He comes in every day, does his job and it got him a new contract in the NHL.

“It’s huge for him, his family and the team. It’s definitely a day in his life that he’ll always remember. He’s one of those guys that earns every penny. You get the same effort day in and day out, and you can’t say enough about him…he’s an all-around great player.”




1 p - BOS 82 54 19 9 261 177 117
2 y - PIT 82 51 24 7 249 207 109
3 x - TBL 82 46 27 9 240 215 101
4 x - MTL 82 46 28 8 215 204 100
5 x - NYR 82 45 31 6 218 193 96
6 x - PHI 82 42 30 10 236 235 94
7 x - CBJ 82 43 32 7 231 216 93
8 x - DET 82 39 28 15 222 230 93
9 WSH 82 38 30 14 235 240 90
10 NJD 82 35 29 18 197 208 88
11 OTT 82 37 31 14 236 265 88
12 TOR 82 38 36 8 231 256 84
13 CAR 82 36 35 11 207 230 83
14 NYI 82 34 37 11 225 267 79
15 FLA 82 29 45 8 196 268 66
16 BUF 82 21 51 10 157 248 52


R. Johansen 82 33 30 3 63
J. Wisniewski 75 7 44 0 51
B. Dubinsky 76 16 34 5 50
C. Atkinson 79 21 19 -4 40
A. Anisimov 81 22 17 -2 39
N. Foligno 70 18 21 5 39
R. Umberger 74 18 16 -3 34
M. Letestu 82 12 22 1 34
J. Johnson 82 5 28 -7 33
B. Jenner 72 16 13 6 29
S. Bobrovsky 32 20 5 .923 2.38
C. McElhinney 10 11 1 .909 2.70
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