Goal Breakdown: Cam Snipes on the Sabres, Duclair Makes Amends

Posted by The Coach on October 15, 2014
Columbus Blue Jackets / 2 Comments

Welcome to the initial Goal Breakdown for the 2014-15 Blue Jackets season. If you are here, you’ve probably seen one of these posts in the past. If you haven’t seen one before, then welcome, and enjoy. I’m going to be doing these a little different this year than in the past, with a new Goal Breakdown being posted every Wednesday (give or take). They won’t be game specific, but will usually feature one goal scored by the CBJ, and one scored against them. I will tend to focus on what the Blue Jackets are doing (or not doing) that led to the goal being scored, usually beyond the obvious “the goalie didn’t stop it”. I will mostly use goals from the previous week, but will look at older goals if anyone has a question about how any goal happened. If you have a request, you hit me up on Twitter @TheCoachUB. I don’t tweet much, but if you mention me I will probably see it eventually. Today’s post will feature Cam Atkinson‘s powerplay goal versus Buffalo, and Rick Nash’s goal late in the game versus the Rangers.
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Three Stars and Game in One Picture: DAL @ CBJ

Posted by AlisonL on October 14, 2014
Columbus Blue Jackets, Game Discussion / No Comments

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.

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CBJ European Prospect Season(so far) Recap

Posted by CBJProspects on October 13, 2014
Columbus Blue Jackets, Prospects / No Comments


Still playing a bit of catch up folks so today we’ll be seeing how the Jackets three prospects playing across the pond are doing.

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Three Stars and Game in One Picture: NYR @ CBJ

Posted by DerDrache on October 11, 2014
Columbus Blue Jackets, Game Discussion / No Comments

OK, is there a better team to host for the home opener than the New York Rangers? These games are becoming absolute gems where both teams play hard, things often get a bit nasty and you know that anyone could be the hero of the night. Fans who packed the Arena District this Saturday night were rewarded with not only a CBJ win over a division rival but an absolute heckuva game. Let’s get into who the NHL picked as the 3 stars and who could be perceived as the studs and duds.

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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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