Jan 23, 2014; Columbus, OH, USA; Columbus Blue Jackets left wing Matt Calvert (11) celebrates with teammates after scoring a goal against the Philadelphia Flyers during the second period at Nationwide Arena. Mandatory Credit: Russell LaBounty-USA TODAY Sports

An Open Letter To The Columbus Blue Jackets: FOCUS

Dec 9, 2013; Pittsburgh, PA, USA; Columbus Blue Jackets left wing Matt Calvert (11, middle) is congratulated by teammates after Calvert scored a goal against the Pittsburgh Penguins during the third period at the CONSOL Energy Center. The Penguins won 2-1. Mandatory Credit: Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

Columbus Blue Jackets Players:

Forget the last few games. Those are gone and there isn’t anything you can do about them now. Also forget about the 8 game winning streak. That’s over too. Concentrate on the remaining 25+ games.  use the Olympic break as a chance to get rested, get healthy, and renew the intensity you’re going to need to finish the season strong.

Own the game. Controlling the tempo of the game is a must. Whoever controls the tempo controls their destiny. Opportunities abound during every game. You have to take advantage of them every time. Get your shots on goal, that’s a potential assist or goal every time it hits their goalie. Win the battle on the boards…every opportunity to control the puck is another possible scoring chance.

Concentrate on the task at hand. Again, forget the streak and the bad losses. Don’t take bad penalties, and take advantage when the opponent makes mistakes.

Jan 4, 2014; St. Louis, MO, USA; St. Louis Blues defenseman Ian Cole (28) checks Columbus Blue Jackets left wing Blake Comeau (14) during the first period at the Scottrade Center. Mandatory Credit: Scott Rovak-USA TODAY Sports

Understand that every second that you’re on the ice means something. If you weren’t meant to be there, you wouldn’t be there.

Send a message to everyone in the league whenever you’re on the ice. You’re one of the best players in the world, act like it. Ignore the pain in your legs the 2nd game in a row. There are thousands of kids that would gladly give their right arm to have the opportunity to suit up in the NHL every night.

Look guys, I know you’ve all heard this a hundred times from your coaching staff. You really don’t want to hear it from a pinheaded writer like me. I just wanted to reinforce the fact that we believe in you, we believe in Todd Richards and his great staff, and we believe that the Columbus Blue Jackets are a playoff team, and will prove it to the rest of the league in the coming months.

Best wishes,

A frustrated fan

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