Archive for June, 2009

28
Jun
09

Draft Wrap

A quick summary of the Blue Jackets picks in the 2009 NHL Entry Draft:

JohnMoore09Draft

John Moore, Defense, 6’2″, 189lbs, Shoots Left, here’s the NHL’s video on the CBJ’s 21st overall pick:

Hockey’s future has this to say:

A slick-skating defenseman with tons up offensive upside. Can get to top speed rather quickly and stickhandle with efficiency. Has a solid first pass when he’s not leading the rush. Has a quick and accurate release from the backend. Likes to shoot and prefers to slide into the high slot and pull the trigger. He activates off the point a lot, especially on the powerplay. Gets the puck on and off his stick quickly.

Everything I have read about this kid only points to good things for the future of the organization. Moore was one of four defenseman drafted by the Blue Jackets this weekend. This is a relatively obvious attempt to insure a strong pipeline of defensemen as the current young core matures, I believe that the guidance and management of GM Scott Howson will continue to pay off, and we will see even more of that when free agency begins in a few days. Here’s a quick look at the remainder of the CBJ’s picks.

Kevin Lynch, Center, 6’1″, 190lbs, Shoots Right

There isn’t too much information out there about Lynch, some believe he was a reach at the 56th overall pick as he was the 100th ranked North American Skater.

David Savard, Defense, 6’2″, 200lbs, Shoots Right

Another potential offensive threat on the back end, also with some size. The scouting report says that the play in his own end is a weak point in his play, which will surely improve in the system especially Hitch at the helm.

Thomas Larkin, Defense, 6’5″, 205lbs, Shoots Right

As GMSH said during the “Breakfast with the Blue Jackets” Program today, a lot of the later rounds are used to obtain players with size, and this guy has it. As the picks go on, the information becomes harder and harder to come by, but like all of the men drafted this weekend, we won’t know what it all means for 3-5 years.

Anton Blomqvist, Defense, 6’4″, 189lbs, Shoots Left

Reminds scouts of Niklas Kronwall, could pan out to be a great pick in a late round.

Kyle Neuber, Right Wing, 6’2″, 220lbs, Shoots Left

Here’s all you really need to know at this point:

Look for free agency news coming soon, hopefully Rick Nash signing among other news.

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26
Jun
09

2009-10 Begins Today

250px-NHL_-_2009_Draft_Montréal_(English)

Tonight begins a new season for the National Hockey League, no you did not sleep through summer, but the draft is the point in which every team starts anew with a chance at Lord Stanley, minus maybe the NY Islanders (sorry guys). The Blue Jackets hold the 16th pick in the draft tonight and if you couldn’t tell the draft isn’t exactly something I put a huge focus on personally, I leave that to people who actually know what they’re talking about. Here are some links to some draft previews by other CBJ sites and NHL sites:

At the very least, sit back and see what happens during tonight’s first round, I’ll be attending the CBJ Official Draft Party at Nationwide Arena tonight, hopefully returning with some new toys.

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Carry the Flag!

19
Jun
09

Mason and Nash

Congratulations go out to the Blue Jackets own Goaltender Steve Mason and Captain Rick Nash. While Nash was on vacation in Europe, last night he “took home” the 2009 NHL Foundation Award going to the player who best applies the core values of hockey to his community. Steve Mason then took home the Calder Trophy, and it wasn’t even close:

2008-2009 Calder Trophy Voting
Pts. (1st-2nd-3rd-4th-5th)
1. Steve Mason, CBJ 1268 (121-6-2-2-0)
2. Bobby Ryan, ANA 829 (9-84-24-9-4)
3. Kris Versteeg, CHI 323 (1-8-26-35-22)
4. Pekka Rinne, NSH 319 (0-15-34-9-17)
5. Drew Doughty, L.A. 303 (0-14-22-26-17)

Mirtle has a great break down of the voting for the awards here and here.

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Mason is the first Blue Jacket to take home the Rookie of the Year honor and joins current NHL standouts such as Patrick Kane, Evgeni Malkin, Alex Ovechkin, Dany Heatley, and Evgeni Nabokov, among many other former NHLers. One of the cooler things about being able to see the full list of voting is this:

2008-2009 Hart Trophy Voting
Pts. (1st-2nd-3rd-4th-5th)
1. Alex Ovechkin, WSH 1264 (115-14-2-2-0)
2. Evgeni Malkin, PIT 787 (12-71-27-9-8)
3. Pavel Datsyuk, DET 404 (4-14-38-19-19)
4. Steve Mason, CBJ 266 (0-13-21-18-16)
5. Zach Parise, N.J. 257 (0-5-20-31-29)
6. Sidney Crosby, PIT 103 (0-3-5-13-18)

Yes Steve Mason beat out the savior himself, Sidney Crosby. Yes I know, Crosby has a cup and we don’t yada yada, but this result was probably more of a result that Malkin and Crosby take away some votes from each other. Another nice to see final result:

2008-2009 Jack Adams Award Voting
Pts. (1st-2nd-3rd)
1. Claude Julien, BOS 224 (35-14-7)
2. Andy Murray, STL 135 (15-17-9)
3. Todd McLellan, S.J. 98 (9-14-11)
4. Ken Hitchcock, CBJ 69 (5-9-17)

Personally I think that Hitch deserved to finish higher than 4th, especially with the President’s Trophy winning Sharks falling in the opening round of the Stanley Cup Playoffs. That leads me to a quick tangent, that the 08-09 Jackets pretty much limped into the playoffs where as the previous season they collapsed right after the All-Star weekend. If the timing of the team pretty much running out of gas is going farther and farther into the season, it is only a matter of time before the Jackets are making a push for many more post season honors.

13
Jun
09

Fitting Finale

The 2008-2009 NHL Season came to its official end last night in Detroit, Michigan as the Pittsburgh Penguins won game 7 of the Stanley Cup Final 2-1. Watching the last month and a half of hockey without the CBJ participating has been somewhat bitter, but necessary, mostly because becoming a fan of the Jackets has helped me to become a huge fan of the sport and the league itself.

Probably one of the worst aspects of the playoffs has been the officiating I witnessed. I am no apologist for the Red Wings but throughout these playoffs the consistency has been piss poor. The Red Wings were benefiting from non-calls throughout the first three rounds but suddenly the calls they had been getting didn’t materialize. Did the Pens get all the calls? Certainly not, but the whole mess was questionable at best. It really makes fans more jaded when they see other teams not getting called for penalties that were so costly during the regular season and even playoffs. Specifically the now infamous “Too Many Men” call but even as far back as the Jared Boll instigator penalty in the final 5 minutes of a game that resulted in a suspension… the same thing that Malkin was not suspended for during the finals.

I’m sure this comes across as just sour grapes, but the Jackets were hosed regularly throughout this season that could have had an impact on the final result that we saw in April.

Lets put that all to bed, because in less than two weeks the 2009-10 season will begin in earnest. First up, the NHL Entry Draft, this year hosted in Montreal.

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This should be a pretty exciting way to unofficially kick-off the 2009 season and it could be a really good barometer for how hockey crazy the town is after the Jackets have gotten over one hurdle, but have many yet to conquer. On that note, I’ve noticed out and around Columbus a significant increase in the amount of CBJ attire, maybe its just being more attuned to looking for it, but I believe there has been a significant increase in public support around town, another good sign.

Coming up shortly after the draft will be Development Camp hosted in The Dispatch Ice Haus. Puck-Rakers had a quick break-down:

Here’s the roster:

Forwards: Stefan Legein, Brock McBride, Tomas Kubalik, Matt Calvert, Keith Harvey, Matt Caria, Sean Collins, Trent Vogelhuber, Kelly Geoffrey, Jake Hansen, Tim Miller, Nick Sucharski, Cam Atkinson.

Defense: Brent Regner, Theo Ruth, Cody Goloubef, Steven Delisle, Will Weber, Kevin Roeder, Tim Filangieri, Drew Olson, Spencer McAvoy.

Goaltender: Kevin Lalande, Allen York.

Here’s the on-ice schedule:

June 29: 2:45 to 4:15 p.m.
June 30: 10:30 a.m. to noon
July 1: 10:30 a.m. to noon
July 2: 10:30 a.m. to noon

One can assume the roster will probably include players acquired in this year’s entry draft.

Enjoy the next two weeks that should be relatively slow new-wise, but there will surely be rumors swirling about potential draft-day trades… stay tuned.




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