HOW BOUT THEM JACKETS? Well my friends, the streak…it is over. The Jackets went to Philly today, and left with Scott Hartnell’s pride in tact. What an effort from the Jackets. Have we seen a more complete, full-60 game from this team, regardless of roster, this season? The Jackets went into Philly and took away a much needed 2 points as well as a good ego boost as the team now looks to the second half of a back to back tomorrow night versus San Jose. Let’s get a look at who the NHL named the three stars…hot tip, I’m going to disagree…
Well. What really can be said. The Blue Jackets are fielding a patched together roster of NHL players, hopefuls and wannabe’s and each group is being asked to play perhaps a bit more than it’s used to…so you end up with what we saw. Lackluster results, turnovers, miscommunication and errant passing and a loss. You gotta feel for these guys, but the NHL schedule doesn’t care what’s going on in your locker room or on your roster – play continues. So onward we go. Let’s look at the three stars as designated by the NHL:
Two thirds of the way through this game my mind was full of hockey thoughts…I had things all worked out in my head – yay Ryan Murray (please don’t get hurt), look at the team battling with 7 D and 11 F (please don’t get hurt), hey Letestu nice goal – we might do this (please don’t get hurt). And then Nick Foligno was injured in a freak accident where, while battling for the puck with Jeff Carter, his head collided with the hind shank of the linesman. After lying motionless on the ice, Foligno was stretchered off and was seen waving to the crowd. Later it was a relief to hear that per the Blue Jackets twitter, and via Jeff Rimer relating an update from President of Hockey Operations, John Davidson, that Foligno was not taken to a hospital and was having x-rays at the Staples Center. JD said that Foligno will be fine.
We’ll get to the three stars in a second but let’s make a few things clear first. (1) The injury to Foligno was not. Jeff. Carter’s. Fault. I’m a lot more ticked off he scored a goal against the Jackets then for what he did on that play. (2) Look at the linesman – his position (completely coincidental) is what causes the injury (3) We do not know if/when word of Foligno’s health update got to the team on the bench…and / or if it ever got to Bob who sits in net (obviously). Nick is a beloved member of this team – you have to believe seeing your teammate go down like that surely will rattle you. Before that injury, I was really invested on the outcome of the game, after the injury – honestly – not so much. Did it impact the team? Look at that long flatline in the third…and the impact on shooting rate after. You have to believe it did.
There’s always an end to the honeymoon. For the Jackets, that night was tonight. Coming off a franchise best 2-0-0 start to the season, with the much ballyhooed Stars coming in with no wins and no goals for Benn nor Seguin. So, now ask yourself if your as surprised by what happened. The Stars came in H-O-T and for one period dominated (end of first period had the Stars with an even strength 64.29% FF vs a measly 35.71% for the CBJ). That one period was enough of an edge that the Jackets just couldn’t crawl back, even after a fairly even outing by both teams for the balance of the game.
So let’s look at who the NHL named the three stars of the night. And see if we agree.
Well friends, it’s hockey season. Welcome back to the crazy 82 game ride. Luckily, the Jackets started on an up note. Buffalo, a team that finished in last place last season, wasn’t exactly an intimidating opponent and arguably a welcome first opponent for a very different looking Jackets roster than a lot of fans expected. Nonetheless, the team suited up, with newly returned Ryan Johansen and three rookies suited up to beat the Sabres 3-1.
If you’ve not been with the Union Blue for these recaps in the past, a quick primer. Every game we look at the three stars as named on NHL.com and let you know if we agree or disagree. We then name one “stud” and one “dud” from the game and wrap it all up with a glorious piece of art from the famous @RockmanHalo. So let’s get to it…
It starts tonight. For the Jackets they are one of 30 teams, playing 82 games each. Fighting to play for what really matters…the Stanley Cup. But let’s not get ahead of ourselves.
The off-season has been one big storyline of a number one center and his (lack of) contract, followed by a training camp that was a variation of “bet you didn’t see THAT coming”. The lineup is currently one that no one could have predicted and more changes are sure to come – not only those due to players fans will love to welcome back but also due to trades, players not performing, or (gasp!) another injury. There are nerves, and there are question marks. People are already wondering when contracts will be signed for players due to be free agents after the season.
But for now – just for now – remember the anticipation.
Today, Jackets fans are filled with hope. Nothing has been lost, nothing has been gained. Today – it’s truly possible that by the end of this season anything could happen. So for now, remember how much you desperately waited for NHL hockey to return. How you clamored for updates on the team or on your favorite player…remember when the weather turned, just about a week or so ago, and that cool crisp bite re-entered the air, signaling that it’s time to return to the rink.
No one knows what this season will bring, but it’s sure to bring concern, celebration, questioning, frustration and times when you can’t believe what’s happening. So for now, as the first puck prepares to drop on the Blue Jackets season, remember right now. Because right now you know all the reasons that you love hockey so much. It’s just might take a few months and 82 (or more!) games to remind you of that again.
Carry the Flag – Go Jackets.
‘Twas the Friday before Cannonfest and all through the city, everyone was getting excited and the planners were busy! Ok but seriously…
Cannonfest V is right around the corner and we couldn’t be more excited for all that we have in store.
With the fun just two days away, we wanted to share some of the great details we have in store for everyone who comes out.
Cannonfest V is just a little more than a week away. We’re looking forward to seeing all of you at Strongwater Food & Spirits on Sunday, August 31st! 1-4 pm for those of you still needing to add this to your calendars, by the way!
There’s a lot of fun stuff planned, but at it’s core, Cannonfest has always been about the CBJ community – those who love and support the team. So we wanted to be sure to find a way to get YOU involved even more than just coming out and enjoying the fun!
So with that, we are proud to announce the 2014 Cannonfest V Video Contest! (The We Like Pitza Edition)
Wow. Well that was a game. It was everything we love and hate about the match ups with Nashville – physical play where one big play usually makes the difference. Now you can add stellar goal tending to the recurring trend of these games. Who can forget the flurry of saves Bob made against Nashville in the final game last season and he would do it again in the closing seconds to preserve another win. In his post game interview, James Wisniewski said that was as close to a playoff game as you get. I have to agree. We were fortunate enough to be at the game and the atmosphere was pins and needles. That game was intense, hard hitting hockey. That’s what you want to see – that’s what JD has promised us…and tonight we got it (well at least after the first period). With the Jackets’ divisional opponents scooping up points tonight the win was essential and the boys in Union Blue got it done. They travel to Dallas next and I have to believe they are gonna need the day in between to recover from that match up. So on to the three stars…
Going into tonight’s game, the Blue Jackets faced 9 of their next 12 games at home; an advantage in what is important stretch if the boys in Union Blue want to be in the playoff mix. That home stand started against the Carolina Hurricanes tonight and getting a win was of the highest importance. There were a lot of storylines – Horton’s first game in Columbus, Bob and Calvert were back and this Carolina team was coming in red hot after five consecutive wins. After an average first 10 minutes or so, the two teams started to fire and it was the Jackets that would ultimately come out on top with an exciting 3-0 win. Bonus – the game was clean too! No penalties until the third, and only one PK from the CBJ.
There was a good crowd in Nationwide tonight – and it’s great to imagine that a lot of folks who weren’t at earlier games saw an on-ice product that was exciting and will hopefully draw them back again and again. Plus – a previously unknown treasure was discovered tonight…but we’ll get to that. Let’s start with our three stars as named by NHL.com.