Two nights ago, the Columbus Blue Jackets raked the Toronto Maple Leafs in a 5-2 beat down. Four of the five goals were scored in the 3rd period. After starting off the year in a struggle to find the back of the net, Columbus has now, in the last 3 games, outscored their opponents 12-4.
This is what I expect from this team.
A few days ago, I wrote an article claiming the offense was to blame for the slow start, not the defense. Although the blue line had been shaky early, I wrote that they could only hold off the opposition so long and they needed goals to help their cause.
I was angry about the lack of goal scoring-not because of the inability, but because they weren’t playing to their potential. Last season, goal scoring was a struggle. But the team got pieces to improve that facet. When the team started off slow this season, fans were upset because they knew the team could score.
Sometimes I question what’s worse- the inability to score or not playing to the potential. But after the recent 3 game winning streak it’s become crystal clear that inability is worse. Potential can be reached, eventually, with hard work and better coaching. That’s something you can control. But if you’re unable to put the puck in the back of the net due to lack of talent, then you’re simply unable. Simple as that.
Tonight, Anaheim visits Columbus and the Jackets hope they can ride the goal-scoring momentum. I expect them to. Because they’re able. Because, for fans, the moment we throw up our hands and say “Well, Gaborik can’t score anymore” or “That’s no longer Umberger’s game ” it becomes true. We, as fans, must hold the team to a higher standard, both on the ice and in the scoresheet.