Archive for January, 2011

25
Jan
11

Game 49 – ANAHEIM DUCKS

The streaking Blue Jackets get their second crack at a Ryan Getzlaf-less Anaheim Ducks squad in the final game before the All-Star Break.

7:00pm EST, Nationwide Arena

Fox Sports Ohio, High Definition

With today’s news of ice-issues at Nationwide Arena it could be a tumultuous few hours before the game gets started (hopefully) tonight. It hasn’t been announced as an alternative, but I imagine the contingency plan would be to move the game to tomorrow night. Surely a pain for the players and fans, but yours truly would finally get to a home game this month.

The last time the Jackets faced the Ducks without All-Everything, Ryan Getzlaf, they were humbled in a sickening way, 6-0 in the Honda Center.

The Jackets should be a more motivated club tonight not wanting to let-up on their 5-game point streak before All-Star Weekend, a win not only increases their point total to 53, but (as of now) would tie them for 10th place in the West (3 points back of 8th place Colorado).

The Cannon has the projected line-ups, including your starting goalie, Steve Mason, although in not a surprising move, defenseman Rostislav Kelsla will sit tonight and attempt to heal up for the final stretch of 33 games.

Huge two-points on the ice tonight, Jackets have to find a way.

Go Jackets.

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22
Jan
11

Game 48 – ST LOUIS BLUES

After starting the new year 0-5, the Blue Jackets have gained points in 4 straight games and need to carry momentum into a massive game tonight in St. Louis.

8:00pm EST, Scottrade Center

Fox Sports Ohio, High Definition

As we venture deeper into the final half of the season, the urgency with which the Jackets must play increases. Especially as teams ahead of them continue to gain points…

The Jackets have gone 2-9-4 in their last 15 road games and have won only once since March of 2007.

Yikes.

Sounds like I picked a good road game to travel to… they are DUE for a win.

After Steve Mason’s strong outing on Wednesday, it wouldn’t surprise me one bit to see Mase back in net tonight. The key of course will be to come up with a couple of key saves early in the game as the Jackets will no doubt have a hard time finding their feet as they tend to do early in games.

On a side note, in this time of spread-out games I’d like to be posting more often, but I recently moved and my ISP has been extremely slow when it comes to installing the internet at the new place.

Huge two points on the line… with a (regulation) win the Jackets will jump to 11th place and sit a mere 3 points out of 8th place.

Go Jackets.

19
Jan
11

Game 47 – FLORIDA PANTHERS

We’re all just waiting to see how the Blue Jackets respond after a tough, shoot-out, loss last night in Tampa.

7:30pm EST, Bank Atlantic Center

Fox Sports Ohio, High Defintion

I think a loss tonight will force a lot of us fans to take a long hard look at the remaining schedule and swallow that all too familiar pill.

The end is here.

Even with a win tonight, thinks look dire for the Jackets who, according to SportsClubStats.com, need to go 22-10-4 to earn a spot in the top 8.

Ouch.

But life goes on, the Blue Jackets are all of our team, and while sometimes it may be tough to cheer them on, last night they gave a performance deserving of our support.

Tonight of course would be the oh-so-typical CBJ let-down game, but when you’re in the situation the Blue Jackets are, they cannot afford to have let downs. Period.

As we all witnessed last night, Steve Mason did not start (nor did Dan Ellis), but Mason is expected in net for tonight’s contest.

Go Jackets.

18
Jan
11

Game 46 – TAMPA BAY LIGHTNING

The Jackets travel to the Sunshine State for a two-game trip into the home of the Lightning featuring a showdown with the coach who snubbed the Blue Jackets, Guy Doucher.

7:30pm EST, St. Pete Times Forum

Fox Sports Ohio, High Definition

Not many could have reasonably predicted the Blue Jackets gaining 3 out of a possible 4 points this past weekend against Central Division leading Detroit, but the Jackets found a way to keep the 2010-11 season on life support.

NHL.com‘s preview may have written them off however, with yet another typo-filled game preview…

The players and front office aren’t going to make a big deal out of facing the coach who turned down the Blue Jackets in the summer, but it’s an even bigger deal that not only did he turn down our team and city, but he did it to be with Detroit (and Canada’s) golden boy, Steve Yzerman.

No, I didn’t watch Stevie Y play much, if at all, but I know the one thing I need to know, he’s a Red Wing, who just happens to manage the Tampa Bay Lightning.

Of course, I want Rick Nash to become Columbus’ own Steve Yzerman, but I’ll go ahead and hate Yzerman because of who he played for.

Back to the game at hand. Steve Mason is expected to get his 3rd consecutive start, for better or worse. Look at this past weekend, if Mason had the defensive corps of the Wings playing in front of him, he’d be just as good as Howard is (was) for the Wings. And if Howard or MacDonald played behind the Blue Jackets’ defensive corps… well let’s just say “sieve” would be a compliment.

The Dispatch is expecting Dan Ellis to get the start for the Lightning, let’s hope there are lots of #DanEllisProblems tweets flying around the Twitter-sphere tonight, as he used to be a major problem for the CBJ when he played for the Preds.

For all the rough and tumble past month, the Jackets are still in the hunt for the post-season, sitting only 6 points out of 8th place and having a 3.5% chance at making it to the promised land again. Sportsclubstats.com projects a necessary record of 22-11-4 the rest of the way, or 50 points to make it happen.

It may have started this past weekend, but there’s no excuse to not keep it going now.

Go Jackets.

15
Jan
11

Game 45 – DETROIT RED WINGS

Great win last night, but the gravity of that win will severely be decreased if the CBJ cannot find a way to win tonight.

 

Sorry for the short preview, to make up for it, here’s my good friend Nick’s thoughts on last night’s MASSIVE WIN:

Sports have the potential to take on a bigger meaning then just winning or losing. Last night at the Columbus Blue Jackets game this is exactly what happened. I found myself not just rooting for a win but I found myself rooting for the fans and the city of Columbus.

The team was on a 5-game slide and was facing one of the best teams in the league, Detroit. We have not fared well against the other team from up north. When Tyler Sweinfurth, with a lot of help from Lori Schmidt, decided that there should be money placed on the outcome of the game, the moneyontheboard idea for last night’s game was started, and the game last night took on a different meaning.

I could explain the atmosphere of the game, which was awesome, or even the outcome, we won in a shootout, but that really takes a backseat to how the win came about. I am not a hardcore hockey fan but the efforts of these millionaires on ice seemed to reach a different level. There was no fiery pregame speech by coaches but rather the CBJ fans directly affected the team’s mindset.

Thanks to Tyler, Lori, and a whole bunch of generous fans the team was presumably less focused on money, women, or selling memorabilia and what we saw was a team and its fans supporting one another to deliver something truly remarkable, a memorable sporting experience that may not make it on Sportscenter but for those involved, will always remember. Thank you Tyler and Lori.

Thanks Nick!

Go Jackets.

14
Jan
11

Game 44 – DETROIT RED WINGS

A season on the line this weekend during the match-up with the owners of Columbus, the Detroit Red Wings.

7:00pm EST, Nationwide Arena

Fox Sports Ohio, Standard Definition

The Jackets could take a public beating tonight as they face the Wings… which seems to be the calling-card of the CBJ as of late.

With all of the money on the board, it will be a sad sad disappointment if the Jackets don’t put it ALL on the line tonight. If this team can’t find the will to push itself to the max, even without prevailing, it would be a huge let down for us all.

Here’s to a HUGE weekend for the Union Blue and city of Columbus.

SportsClubStats.com gives the CBJ a 2.7% chance of making the playoffs right now… tonight it has to start going the right way.

Go Jackets.

12
Jan
11

Money on the Board

While sitting watching last night’s meltdown by the Blue Jackets many thoughts crept through my mind and certainly every Jackets fan in attendance at Nationwide or watching from the comfort of home.

“I guess 2008-09 was a fluke…”

“Would Mason have made those saves?”

“This shouldn’t be happening…”

Shortly after the loss, Tyler sent a text to me that ended up sending shockwaves through the Blue Jacket community today:

“I will ante up for a GWG this weekend”

And today’s Blue Jackets Twitter-meme was born.

Tyler and I have known eachother for 7 years, and I’ve always admired his care for others and un-dying passion for our Blue Jackets, he was a fan before I even liked hockey, and convinced me to get season tickets with him a couple years ago.

Last season fans tried to help motivate the team by putting money on the board and it helped from time to time, but the urgency surrounding this season is nearly palpable.

This all has certainly exploded more than Tyler or I would expect, and I am honored to have someone trying to help his team and a charity as a writer on this tiny little blog about our small-market hockey team that the national media wants to pretend doesn’t exist…

One sentence could make the difference…

Tyler contributes to share, “Why I put money on the board”

The Detroit Red Wings are coming to town.  This should strike fear into all of Blue Jacket Fans’ hearts.  The Jackets have only beaten that other team from up north once since the 8-2 drubbing two years ago.  On top of that, since the playoff sweep at the hands of the Wings, the Jackets have not been the same team.  Often looking listless and like a team without an identity.

Flash back to this time last year during the infamous “Death Spiral”.  I can’t remember who started it, but a Jackets fan “put money on the board” for a game winning goal in any game.  This ended by Freddy Modin scoring an overtime winner against the Wings in late December.  This is where the idea (plus the long standing locker room tradition) of putting money on the board for Friday came from.  I, as well all Jackets fans, are tired of being pushed around by the Red Wings.  This is my way of motivating the Jackets.  I feel that if the boys can pull out one, or both, of the games this weekend, this season can be saved.  As we said last year at this time: IT STARTS NOW!

I want to especially thank Lori Schmidt for her help in all of this.  Lori was instrumental in spreading the word about this movement and I feel that she deserves most of the credit for this.  I would also like to thank anyone who pledged money to the charities.  It warms my heart and brings tears to my eyes to know that so many people are willing to help out the community.  This had turned into something bigger than a frustrated fan and I cannot say thank you enough.

GO JACKETS! BEAT DETROIT!!!




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