CBJ CHL Prospect Season (so far) Recap

Posted by CBJProspects on October 10, 2014
Prospects / No Comments

Greetings all – with the NHL getting going and most prospects (the healthy ones at least) having played a few games, I thought it was time to get going. First in Springfield, the Falcons played their three preseason games but due to the AHL not keeping track/someone asleep at the switch in Springfield, I can barely tell you who played, let alone scored. The team went 1-2 with the win coming in a shootout.

Let’s look at the rest of the boys playing in the CHL:

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Three Stars and Game in One Picture: CBJ @ BUF

Posted by AlisonL on October 09, 2014
Columbus Blue Jackets, Game Discussion / No Comments

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…

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Hockey. It is here.

Posted by AlisonL on October 09, 2014
Columbus Blue Jackets / No Comments

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.

 

 

The Rebound Tracking Project: An Introduction

Posted by The Coach on October 07, 2014
Columbus Blue Jackets, Stats / 3 Comments

Of the four major North American sports leagues, hockey has been the slowest to take to advanced stats. It’s no surprise really. Hockey isn’t parcelled out into nice little segments like baseball and football. The possession’s aren’t as neat and easily definable as they are in basketball. Hockey is a dynamic, fluid mess of players and equipment. Attempts have been made, and it is amazing the progress that has been made in the development of advanced stats given the paucity of data. Hockey is similar to basketball this way. Go back a few years ago, and the most advanced stats going on were on-court/off-court plus-minus, and other similar measures. Any hockey fan should know the dangers of judging a player by plus-minus. Basketball was probably behind hockey until SportVu was introduced. Suddenly, there was an overflow of data, and smart people were able to take that data, and figure out better ways to play the game, better ways to assemble rosters, and a whole world of other ideas, many of which don’t leave team facilities. Hockey needs a SportVu.

Now there has been talk of this happening for a couple years now. In the meantime, intrepid people like Eric Tulsky and Corey Sznajder decided to stop waiting for a SportVu-esque data collection measure to come to hockey and just track items themselves. Primarily this has been through scoring chances and zone entries/exits. Through this fantastic work, we’ve learned a lot about the game of hockey. We are finally connecting dots between the classic hockey thought and advanced stats. Every coach in hockey history has emphasized the importance of the the blueline. Now we know how important it is, and what the best way to cross it or defend it is. We know what plays gain added value from this. That’s a massive step forward from using shot attempts to sorta, kinda measure possession. Alison and I at the Union Blue want to continue on in the good spirit of those who started tracking games (since most of them now work for actual NHL teams).  Continue reading…

Photos from Camp

Posted by DerDrache on September 28, 2014
Photos / No Comments

As the preseason starts to wrap up, here’s a look back at some shots from early in camp!

CBJ Art Contest Winner!

Posted by Ashley Ware on September 26, 2014
Columbus Blue Jackets / No Comments

Hey guys, Ashley here! Maybe you remember the art contest that we announced a few weeks ago, that had a full set of Cannonfest prints as a prize. We asked YOU to submit a drawing of a CBJ player as your entry. We were graced with some really lovely entries, so let’s get on to the winner!

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Everyone is Wrong and I Hate Everything

Posted by The Coach on September 18, 2014
Columbus Blue Jackets / 1 Comment

So I’ve been on vacation the last little while. During a few minutes of downtime the other day, I took some time to catch up on the ongoing Ryan Johansen saga. I posted some of my thoughts on Twitter the other day, but this whole thing is just too complicated and nuanced to really do justice in 140 characters (or even several continued 140 character segments). So here are my full thoughts on this ridiculousness: Everyone is wrong. And most of the thoughts, comments, and what not from those involved in this saga (and even those not) make me hate everything. Continue reading…

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Quick Player Thoughts from Traverse City 2014

Posted by CBJProspects on September 17, 2014
Prospects / No Comments

After spending the past week or so in Traverse watching the Blue Jackets battle to win the championship, I wanted to take a few moments and offer my summary thoughts on each of the players. So here we go:

 

41 Alexander Wennberg 4GP 1-2-3 +4 2PIM
Despite battling a head cold, Alexander sill impressed despite not putting up big numbers. The smooth skating Swede played in all situations and was very impressive handling the puck. He was given a leadership role as an alternate captain throughout the tournament.

 

45 Lukas Sedlak 3GP 0-0-0 +1 2PIM 45
Lukas was the only Jacket draft pick to get scratched but was his usual strong two way presence when he did play. Lukas’ game is one of those when you don’t notice him its a good thing.

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Jackets claim third Traverse City Prospects Tournament Title

Posted by CBJProspects on September 17, 2014
Prospects / No Comments

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The Columbus Blue Jackets are the 2014 Traverse City NHL Prospect Tournament champs after defeating the Dallas Stars 3-2 in overtime. The Jackets did something they hadn’t done all tournament and that is score first. Kerby Rychel took a pass from TJ Tynan in front to make it 1-0 4:48 in. Later in the first, Dallas would score when Radek Faksa took a pass in the slot to tie it at 1.

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Jackets earn perfect record at Traverse – set sights on Championship

Posted by CBJProspects on September 15, 2014
Prospects / No Comments

The Jackets team of prospects took on the St. Louis Blues prospects today in the their final game of the round robin tournament with their spot in the championship game Tuesday already clinched. The CBJ continued the trend of giving up an early goal when the Blues top line got on the board with Ty Rattie and Robby Fabbri working together down low and then finding Yannick Villeux in the slot to make it 1-0.

Six minutes later Oliver Bjorkstrand scored his second of the tournament when he picked up the rebound of an Austin Madaisky point shot on the power play. Two minutes later Jake Chelios scored on the power play to give the Blues their final lead of the game. Mike DiPaolo did what he does best – getting into a marathon (lasted at least a minute) of a bout with the Blues Justin Gutierrez. After that, for some reason, Mike left the game and was in street clothes. I didn’t notice until the second intermission and I don’t remember if I saw him play in the second period.

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