Posts Tagged ‘preseason


European Exhibition – MALMO REDHAWKS

The Blue Jackets play their first ever European Exhibition game this afternoon against the Malmo Redhawks.

Gotta love Google Translate on a day like today.

1:00pm EST, Malmo Arena

Game not available on television, will be streamed live on

From the Malmo Website:

Looks like a pretty nice arena, and nearly brand new. I’m going to try to watch as much as possible on the NHL website this afternoon, because the International Ice should present a bit of a different challenge for the Jackets.

The Cannon has a great game primer for all of us who aren’t taking the time to write about a bunch of players you’ve never heard of. Be sure to give it a read. The one in-game story you should take note of is that Jackets prospect Anton Blomqvist will be playing against his parent club. Hopefully there are no rookie-camp rivalries still brewing.

If you did not hear, the NHL Network (USA) announced that Saturday’s game against the San Jose Sharks will be broadcast live at 3:00pm Saturday. This was an expected move, but one that needs to be shared.

After today, the games count.

Go Jackets


Pre-season game 7, Washington Capitals

After a solid win in Minneapolis, the Blue Jackets battle onward to the end of the pre-season, with a different line-up and goal, but this time against the Washington Capitals.

7:00pm, No local television, check Twitter for a pirated feed.

There are no scheduled replays of this game on NHL Network, so tonight we have to rely on the crew at The Dispatch and any Capitals bloggers/reporters for the information.

Speaking of replays, I DVR’d last night’s win at Minnesota and will be posting a re-cap of that “more-important-than-expected-game” tomorrow.

Until then…

Tonight’s CBJ line-up, via Puck-rakers:

F1: Filatov-Johansen-Kubalik
F2: Sestito-Wilson-Fritsche
F3: Murray-Guite-Mayorov
F4: Clark-MacKenzie-Blunden

D1: Klesla-Guenin
D2: Moore-Commodore
D3: Holden-Clitsome/Savard

G1: Garon
G2: LeNeveu

This game will feature many players fighting for their NHL lives. I think that Kubalik has made a case to remain on the roster through at least the Sweden trip, if not longer. Players like Sestito, are looking to make a statement to be the #1 call-up from Springfield. NHL Veterans Fritsche, Murray, Clark, and Blunden are in the fight of their lives to have a spot on the roster.

On the back-end Klesla is still trying to prove that he can play after last season’s unpleasant injuries, Commodore is still out to prove the doubters wrong, and Clitsome and Savard are trying to lock-down a spot in the NHL.

Tonight’s Capitals line-up:

Forwards: Alex Ovechkin, Eric Fehr, DJ King, Nicklas Backstrom, Brooks Laich, Mike Knuble, Matt Hendricks, Alexander Semin, Andrew Gordon, Jay Beagle, Mathieu Perreault, Marcus Johansson

Defensemen: Tom Poti, John Erskine, Karl Alzner, Brian Fahey, Jeff Schultz, Tyler Sloan

Defensmen who don’t actually play defense: Mike Green

Goaltenders: Michal Neuvirth, Dany Sabourin

In comparison, it’s a highly-motivated, under-manned, CBJ squad versus most of the Capitals opening night roster.

Crazy “Backin’ Up Song” woman says…

Go Jackets.


Pre-season game 6, Minnesota Wild

The Blue Jackets travel to the state of 10,000 lakes while icing their best line-up of the pre-season thus far.

8:00pm, Xcel Energy Center. No live television, tape delayed on the NHL Network tonight at 11:00pm however.

Courtesy of Puck-rakers, here are the project Blue Jackets’ lines:

F1: Huselius-Vermette-Nash
F2: Umberger-Brassard-Voracek
F3: Moreau-Pahlsson-Dorsett
F4: Clark-MacKenzie-Blunden

D1: Hejda-Savard
D2: Methot-Stralman
D3: Tyutin-Clitsome

G1: Mason
G2: LeNeveu

The forward lines are pretty much last season’s forward group with Moreau added in. The group of defensemen should give Mason a chance at success and provide some offensive support from the blue-line. If the Wild are look for some retribution for the apparent injury of Marek Zidlicky. According to Michael Russo, beat writer for the StarTribune, the Wild should be dressing a similar line-up to Tuesday night‘s squad. They are without players Cam Barker, Guillaume Latendresse, and Marek Zidlicky tonight, so the “A-group” of CBJ players has no excuse but to perform, and perform well.

Much like last Saturday’s game in Pittsburgh, this game could turn into a brawl-a-thon. The main reason I don’t see that happening is the Wild will be heading right out of North America post-game… and nobody wants to travel after just getting concussed.

Hide your kids, hide your wife, and hide your husband…

They rapin’ errbody out there.

Go Jackets.


Comeback – JACKETS WIN

While slowly being lulled to sleep by the less than exciting play of two periods and being more entertained by my “hockey family reunion than the game, somebody lit a fire for under the Blue Jackets’ asses.

Plenty has been said about the sweet power-play goal of Nikita Filatov, and deservedly so, I’m just going to mention a few things that stood out throughout the game to me.

Ethan Moreau: While I remain skeptical of his real purpose on this team, last night he was exactly the type of player the Blue Jackets have missed for years. He was flying around hitting, pushing, annoying, and flat-out being a bitch to everyone with Christmas colors on their sweater. There was an instance where he threw a hard check and then was able to elbow a guy in the head a couple of times. When it happens to our own players, it sucks, but when you have an annoying guy on your team, it’s pretty awesome. Moreau may have the scoring, size, grit, and leadership that Dorsett and Boll have yet to consistently provide and play a larger part in this season than expected.

Mike Commodore: Based on some comments from Light the Lamp about a previous radio interview of Commie and more tweeting about horse-racing than anything else, I didn’t expect what I saw from Commodore last night. Commodore seriously seemed like a man on a mission to prove he is, and can continue to be, a productive part of this team. Frankly I was impressed with his hustle, overall positioning, and continuous joining of the rush. Even this little gem from Puck-rakers:

After being denied on a shot from between the circles, defenseman Mike Commodore admitted he dislodged the Wild net in overtime to avoid a 3-on-1 rush the other direction.

He’s using his head while joining the rush. I would love to see Commodore return to the level he played at in 2008-09 and wouldn’t be surprised if he did, but as they say, “Where there’s smoke, there’s fire”. I for one, remain optimistic.

John Moore: I’m uncertain if it’s the change in expectations, or the pressure being put on him, but he did not stand out in the way I expected. I think the expectations have probably risen a bit much for what would be considered fair. Don’t take this as a “bail-out” on John Moore, I’m all-in on Moore, as is the CBJ management I expect. My personal level of expectation was that he would come out looking like mid-to-late 2008-09 and most of 09-10 Kris Russell, but with size. I think Moore will see time this season with the Jackets, and possibly even make the trip to Sweden, but I don’t think he will make the full-time squad this year.

Vermette and Huselius: They both seemed like the players they have always been for the CBJ with just a little rust to work out.

I’m looking forward to trying to find online viewing feeds of the next few games to see what the players that remain in camp have left in the tank. Tomorrow night’s veteran line-up needs to look good and keep their heads up or the Wild may look to exact some nasty revenge.


Pre-season Game 5, Minnesota Wild

The Wild have fallen quickly from the expansion-team-power-house that mastered the trap, like they were early in their existence, and this pre-season isn’t off to a good start either. The Wild have posted ZERO wins in 4 tries so far, what has to be more disconcerting than a lack of wins (after all it is the pre-season) is the total of only 3 goals scored in the first 3 games.

More disconcerting than the LACK of goals is the amount of goals given up. The Wild have surrendered 17 goals in only 4 games so far.

And I thought Roberto Luongo in the playoffs was a sieve.

7:00pm, Nationwide Arena, No Television

A look at the Blue Jackets projected lines, via Puck-rakers:

F1: Huselius-Vermette-Kubalik
F2: Filatov-Wilson-Kolarik
F3: Moreau-Murray-Clark
F4: Sestito-Guite-Blunden

D1: Klesla-Goloubef
D2: Holden-Stralman
D3: Moore-Commodore

G1: Garon
G2: LeNeveu

And the Wild line-up, via the Blue Jackets twitter:

Forwards: Matt Cullen, Mikko Koivu, John Madden, Chuck Kobasew, Andrew Burnette, Brad Staubitz, Casey Wellman, Antti Miettinen, Kyle Brodziak, Cal Clutterbuck, Eric Nystrom, Martin Havlat, Cam Barker, Matt Kassian, Guillaume Latendresse

Defense: Marek Zidlicky, Clayton Stoner, Greg Zanon, Marco Sacndella, Brent Burns, Nick Schultz

Goaltender: Niklas Backstrom, Anton Khudobin

This will be my first taste of “Hardcore Hockey” this season, while just the pre-season, I’m pretty excited for the first trek to Columbus for something other than a family gathering, or just to watch practice. It’s the pre-season for the team, but also for the fans and time to get figure out the 2010-2011 pre-game routine and all the fun stuff that goes along with getting ready for a game.

Go Jackets.


Showing some Fight – JACKETS LOSE

The Jackets put forth a solid effort in their 3rd loss of the pre-season, again at the hands of the Pittsburgh Penguins. Both the Jackets and Pens iced talented line-ups and ended up with a game featuring 74 total PIMs including 10 fighting majors.

This being my first CBJ game of the pre-season to actually watch, I was impressed with a few guys, and underwhelmed with a few others:

While this is just the pre-season, Derick Brassard’s face-off percentage has me very worried. In 24 face-offs he won only 6, SIX! A mere 25% for a player with top-line expectations isn’t going to cut it. Now, thankfully Brassard isn’t yet our full-time 1st line center, but he was respectable when facing off against THE Sidney Crosby, winning 3 of 9. This is definitely an area Brassard must improve in if he is to be any more than a tweener 2nd-3rd line center.

The defensemen were a solid group, but no one really stuck out, which is a good and bad thing at times. I want to see more offensive prowess from John Moore, I want to see more body-banging from Jan Hejda and Fedor Tyutin. David Savard, Nate Guenin, and Michael Ratchuk left something to be desired. Ratchuk’s goal seemed more a result of his experiences as a forward convert last season in Syracuse.

Again today I am left wondering what place Jared Boll has on this team. His fight last night was anything but awe-inspiring, just the typical jab-and-grab-on-and-shake-wildly crap we are used to from him.


On the other hand, what more can you say about Rick Nash? Fans criticize his leadership from time-to-time and the defense is that he leads by scoring goals and winning games. Well, last night Nash, and the Jackets in general, put up quite a fight defending themselves. While Nash may have “lost” his fight, he was beastly in going for the kill shot right from the start, but missed instead of knocking out Evgeni Malkin.

(via Puck Daddy)

After watching Steve Mason play in an entire game for the Jackets, I think it’s safe to say that he won’t be anywhere near as bad as last season. There were flashes of brilliance throughout the entire game as he would make back-to-back saves without hesitation. There was also positive body language as Mason played near the top of his crease whenever logical and he repeatedly stood tall under pressure. The 3 goals given up were all excusable in my opinion and something that a full line-up would have helped him out more.

In other news, the Penguins have quickly become one of those teams full of people to hate in the NHL. Arron Asham, Matt Cooke, Eric Godard are all agitating, dirty players that get down and gritty and can really annoy opposing players (and fans). Kris Letang is quite the bitch as he seemed to really tick off Jake Voracek and Matt Calvert. Malkin is just Malkin, he’s sooo talented but can stand up for himself, I would take him on our team in a heartbeat.

While a loss is a loss, a loss in the pre-season can be spun positively and not sound like a super-crazy, kool-aid-drinking, fan.

Go Jackets.


Pre-season Game 4, Pittsburgh Penguins

After a loss in Columbus to the Penguins last night, the Blue Jackets alternate team gets a shot against a loaded Pittsburgh line-up, this time in the newly opened Consol Energy Center.

7:00pm, Consol Energy Center

Tape delay replays on the NHL Network tonight at 1:00am and tomorrow morning at 8:00am

From the Blue Jackets official site, tonight’s line-ups:

Forwards: Matt Calvert, Derek Dorsett, Derick Brassard, Derek MacKenzie, Nikita Filatov, Ryan Johansen, Trevor Frischmon, Jared Boll, Maksim Mayorov, Rick Nash, Oliver Gabriel, Jakub Voracek

Defense: Nate Guenin, John Moore, Jan Hejda, Theo Ruth, Fedor Tyutin, David Savard, Michael Ratchuk

Goaltenders: Steve Mason, Daren Machesney

The line-up that was fairly soft on defense 4 nights ago has a chance to make a statement against not only Sidney Crosby, but also Evgeni Malkin:

Forwards: Pascal Dupuis, Brett Sterling, Dustin Jeffrey, Chris Conner, Tim Wallace, Ryan Craig, Nick Johnson, Eric Tangradi, Arron Asham, Joe Vitale, Tyler kennedy, Evgeni Malkin, Sidney Crosby

Defense: Corey Potter, Zbynek Michalek, Deryk Engelland, Andrew Hutchinson, Steve Wagner, Brooks Orpik, Simon Despres, Kris Letang

Goaltenders: Marc-Andre Fleury, Brad Thiessen

I’d love to see Nash find a way to get going tonight, presumably alongside Johansen like he was in Wednesday’s home-opener. This will be many fans first chance to catch the team on TV, while not live, on TV instead of having to go or watch online will be a very nice move towards normalcy.

News and notes: has this interview with the Blue Jackets Captain, Rick Nash.

The Minnesota Wild took a big hit today as it was revealed that goaltender Josh Harding has a torn ACL and MCL, taking him out for the remainder of the season.

From Puck-rakers, Grant Clitsome was injured last night, this puts a major damper on his ability to challenge for a NHL roster spot to start the season, and potentially gives John Moore a GREAT chance to make the team, or to at least travel to Sweden with the Blue Jackets.

Go Jackets.

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