As of this afternoon, Gilbert Brule is officially a Blue Jacket for the upcoming portion of the season. That he signed and it went to the wire is not shocking, so did Nash and Klesla in their respective signings. (Each for a lot more cash, too...hello new CBA.)
So, now that Brule is in the fold, and you don't sign him to scratch him, who DOES get the scratch?
My guess at this point is Geoff Sanderson. Don't get me wrong, Sandy's still got it...especially in the wheels department...but coming out of preseason, he doesn't have it like those he's competing with. Down the left side he's already behind Nash and Zherdev which puts him on the third line at best. The third line is the likely home for Brule, too, as he'll likely get the same treatment Ricky did his rookie year.
Another option is to scratch Shelley and bump Sandy down to the fourth line, but relegating him to the checking line could be worse than just scratching him. Afterall, it worked so well for him in Buffalo that we landed him in '00.
Two players I don't think are scratchable to make room for young Gilbert are Tyler Wright and Trevor Letowski. These two kill penalties WAY too well to be in the press box in the "New NHL."
So, Brule's on-ice audition starts Wednesday night in Washington. All the best to him, we'll see how it shakes out.