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Blue Jackets willing to deal first-round picks

Sunday, 06.30.2013 / 9:00 AM ET / News
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Blue Jackets willing to deal first-round picks

The Columbus Blue Jackets have three first-round picks in the 2013 NHL Draft. Whether they'll still have them when it starts Sunday (3 p.m. ET; NBCSN, TSN) remains to be seen.

Columbus owns the 14th, 19th and 27th picks, giving the Blue Jackets extra maneuverability as they try to build on a season that saw them barely miss the Stanley Cup Playoffs.

"We're listening to a lot of offers right now, trying to get things in place for tomorrow and see what occurs," Blue Jackets general manager Jarmo Kekalainen told the Columbus Dispatch on Saturday.

"There could be a situation where we've talked to teams about scenarios where if certain players are available at No. 14 or No. 19 or No. 27, we'd be willing to make a move for this guy or that guy."

Asked if there had already been conversations with other teams, Kekalainen smiled.

"Yeah, there are a few things we've talked about with teams," he said. "So we'll see."

The Blue Jackets also are trying to work out a new contract with Vezina Trophy winner Sergei Bobrovsky, who can become a restricted free agent Friday.

Kekalainen and Bobrovsky's agent, Paul Theofanous, spoke for 90 minutes Friday, according to the Dispatch. Talks on Saturday night or Sunday morning were possible, though nothing is scheduled.

The Dispatch reported that two-, four and five-year deals have been discussed, but money is a stumbling block. The Blue Jackets acquired Bobrovsky from the Philadelphia Flyers a year ago; he took over as the starting goaltender in early March and finished with a 21-11-6 record, a 2.00 goals-against average, four shutouts and a save percentage of .932.

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