Patrik Laine makes shocking announcement in Columbus

Dean Chaudhry
June 12, 2024  (9:24 PM)

Patrik Laine flexing his stick on one of his patented snap-shots against the Anaheim Ducks.
Photo credit: Kirby Lee - USA Today Sports

Oft-injured, yet extremely talented Blue Jackets winger Patrik Laine has come to a surprising decision this week in Columbus.

The former 2nd overall pick from the 2016 NHL Entry Draft - taken one selection after Auston Matthews - has had a tumultuous career that has been maligned by injuries and trade rumours. After spending the first 5 years of his career in Winnipeg, the Finnish sharpshooter was moved alongside Jack Roslovic in a blockbuster deal to Columbus in exchange for Pierre-Luc Dubois and a third round pick in 2021.
In parts of 4 seasons with Columbus, Laine has scored 64 goals and 138 points in just 174 games played. Over the last 3 years, he has only suited up for 129 games, including just 18 this season with 6 goals and 9 points to his name. He missed 9 games after sustaining a concussion in October and then had a season-ending clavicle injury in December in a game against Toronto.
TSN's Pierre LeBrun reported that both sides are looking to manufacture a deal on Wednesday's edition of Insider Trading:
"That's the goal from everyone involved. ... (Laine) would like to move on," LeBrun said. "His agent has had conversations with the Blue Jackets about it, and both sides are gonna work together to try and get that done. He wants a fresh start. Hasn't been a good time in Columbus."

When healthy, Laine was one of the better goal scorers in the NHL as evidenced by his hot start with Winnipeg. He scored 36 goals and 64 points during his rookie season and finished his 5-year tenure with 140 goals and 250 points in 306 games. There were trade talks involving Laine almost every year and his disinterest with the city and organization was ever-present.
Just before being traded to Columbus, Laine suffered an upper-body injury that kept him sidelined for nearly a month. Since then he's sustained 9 injuries or ailments and also entered the NHL/NHLPA Player Assistance Program for mental health reasonings this year.
He's still only 26-years-old, has three 30-goal seasons and one 40-goal year under his belt and had he not been injured in either 2021-22 or 2022-23 he was well on his way to 30+ goals in both seasons. Laine has 2 years remaining on his contract that includes a modified no-trade clause and carries a cap hit of 8.7 million dollars.
Source for the Laine report:
Report: Laine, Blue Jackets working on trade
12 JUIN   |   363 ANSWERS
Patrik Laine makes shocking announcement in Columbus

Should Toronto look to get involved in a deal for Patrik Laine?

No, costs too much and always injured25269.4 %
Yes, he'd be a perfect top-6 fit277.4 %
Only if Columbus ate half of his contract8423.1 %
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