NHL Rumors: Columbus Blue Jackets Looking to Speak to Jeff Gorton?

Blue Jacket's current President with former coworker Jeff Gorton
Photo by Bruce Bennett | Getty Images

Early on Thursday, February 15th, news broke that long-time Blue Jackets General Manager Jarmo Kekalainen had been fired. During a press conference Thursday afternoon, the Columbus Blue Jacket’s President, John Davidson, stated that he would be taking over the General Manager duties for right now. He also said that there is no one currently in the organization that they are looking at to fill the position but that they are going to start looking for a candidate outside of the Blue Jackets.

There has already been speculation about who will be the next General Manager. Some thought maybe an internal candidate such as Director of Player Development Rick Nash or even Director of Player Personnel and Alternate Governor Basil McRae might be a good choice. With the statements John Davidson made in the press conference, it seems unlikely that either will be considered right now.

There have been rumors that the Blue Jackets may ask permission from the Montreal Canadiens Executive Vice President, Jeff Gorton. Among other high-ranking positions in hockey organizations, Gorton has served six seasons with the New York Rangers as their GM and acted as an interim GM for the Boston Bruins for part of a season. In 2021, Gorton and current Blue Jacket’s president, John Davidson, were both fired from the New York Rangers. Jeff Gorton not only has experience in the position, but he has worked closely with Davidson before. If the Canadiens grant permission to speak with him and the Blue Jackets are looking at him, Gorton may be an ideal candidate for the job.

Darren Dreger on ‘Insider Trading’ had this to say, “I believe CBJ will at least ask permission of the Montreal Canadiens to speak with their executive VP in Jeff Gorton… they love the experience of Gorton, and there is clear history with Gorton, and Davidson dating back to their days with the Rangers”

Dreger would later make a post saying, “Why wouldn’t CBJ call Montreal and ask permission to speak with Jeff Gorton? History with Davidson and a GM at heart. Geoff Molson might hang up, but is there harm in asking?”

Lance Schrock

Credentialed Writer covering the Columbus Blue Jackets. Host of the BrewJackets Podcast.

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