It’s been a few weeks since the Chicago Blackhawks made the biggest noise in the off-season shopping market by sending ten top-ranked former players Adam Boqvist and drafts to the Columbus Blue Jackets in exchange for Seth Jones.

With the initial hustle and bustle getting smaller and smaller, we thought it was the right time to see the movement again and bring in the perspective of someone who knows Jones ’play, as we’ve seen it for several seasons. That with me, we were looking for Pale Dragon, the site manager for The Cannon, which manages the entire family of Columbus SB Nation websites. The answer to our questions is as follows:

1. What did you see as the biggest reason for Jones ’decline in the game in recent seasons, especially in 2021?

I think the biggest factor (coach John Tortorella) and the change in philosophy / philosophy made by his staff was. Between 2016-2019, the team had a “safe to die” mindset that encouraged them to take risks in the defensive field to create dams on the other side. Jones and Zach Werenski progressed in this environment. The 5-in-5 numbers were stars.

In the fall of 2019, in response to the loss of important players like Sergei Bobrovsky and Artemi Panarin, the scheme became much more conservative. Knowing that skaters could be at risk while Bob could go to the other side to save on weird men, Joonas Korpisalo and Elvis Merzlikins wanted to limit the number of high-risk options on the net. In 2019-20 (and especially in December and January of that season), the team had great success in this. This meant, however, that they played low-event hockey. This meant that they were more likely to be given tickets to the zones, with these skaters focused on driving sideways.

In 2021, the loss of defensive strikers like Pierre-Luc Dubois, Josh Anderson and Alexander Wennberg helped the team succeed in avoiding high-risk opportunities while allowing zone entries and making more shooting attempts than they created themselves. .

I hate to speculate, but I also wonder if Jones has had COVID. We know that a team of Columbus players tested positive in November, but it was never confirmed. Jones took a slow step and the heavy minutes he played seemed to charge him more. It was very strange to him.

2. Everything we have seen from the analytical community offers negative opinions to Jones. Is there any explanation (other than those specified above) for what this low amount can cause?

Although this scheme change was successful at the team level in 2019, it depressed Jones ’ice numbers. There was more action on the defensive field than in previous seasons, the striker team lost a player like Panarin and therefore created fewer shots and goals. Jones also played heavier minutes than most, and against the best lines of his opponents.

Now, as I said, the same factors would apply to Werensky and by 2021 his numbers were better than Jones ’. Either way, it was a bad year compared to the rest of Jones ’career, although it wasn’t as bad as the league as the numbers suggested. If you want to point out a single metric and say “Jones was one of the top five defenders in the league,” that’s unfair.

This article by Charlie O’Connor and Alison Lukan Athletic does a great job statistics vs. dissolving the difference in eye tests with Jones. Alison is, of course, a master of data-driven analysis, and has also watched every game Jones has played in the last 5.5 seasons.

3. What are some of the things that Jones does well?

Jones is a physical specimen. The Blue Jackets had an employee – Nelson Ayotte – with the title of high-performance director, following the players ’cardiovascular fitness, strength, speed, ability to jump, and so on. He played for 60 minutes in that five-time overtime marathon in a bubble against Tampa and showed no fatigue in subsequent games. With his reach, he seems to be able to block only half the ice when defending against the dam. He is a gentle skater with a good escape speed. Puck has the skills and the shot to be an effective power defender (CBJ has been a huge PP for years, but Jones wasn’t the biggest problem there).

One small thing you’ll notice noticeably is that Jones has a good 3 to 3 extra hours. Put yourself in front of Patrick Kane and you will have a lot of quick victories. There were 17 wins in overtime over the two years Jones spent with Panarin. These points are important for a wildcard group.

Jones ’ultimate strength is his leadership. If he had signed an extension of the colonists, he would surely have been captain. It’s not very loud or demonstrative, but the presence it provides as an example is stable. He learned a lot from his father (former basketball player Popeye Jones) about playing as a professional athlete and the work he requires. This can rub young players in the locker room.

4. To get a positive outlook, would we hold on to the hope that 2021 could be an aberration because it was a weird season for everyone and Jones is so much better than that?

Oh, absolutely.

Colonel or anywhere else, I was sure Jones could go back in a big way. He has too much talent and is still in his prime to continue to drop to 2021 levels. I think new teams, new cities, new contracts and playing with his brother will play a big part. If nothing else, sharing the ice with a better forward team will help him count his stats. Do I think he will ever return to the 2018 level when Norris finished 4th in the vote? No. But he has a few years left as a clear No. 1 defense (i.e., one of the top 32 in the league).

Will he play until the contract level, and until the mid-30s? I’m not sure about that. In the short term, though, does Chicago want to give it another boost with this list? It’s a great accessory.

5. Anything else we should know about him?

Jones is a very talented player and doesn’t take it for granted. He is humble, hardworking and a natural leader. If you ignore his contract and the cost of getting him, I think you’ll appreciate him watching him play.