Report: Columbus close to acquiring Ryan Malone

The Columbus Dispatch is reporting the Blue Jackets are close to a deal for the negotiating rights to Penguins potential unrestricted free agent Ryan Malone that could be announced as early as Tuesday.

The report also states the Minnesota Wild and Vancouver Canucks are interested in the power forward.

The Penguins do not pick in the first three rounds and it’s suggested the Jackets could offer their second and third round picks for Malone, since they already have two first round picks.

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The Blue Jackets have dedicated themselves to improving last year’s roster and Malone would be a good first step in that direction. It is expected if Malone did come to Columbus, they would offer him a four- or five-year contract worth between $4.5 and $5.5 million annually.