Columbus Blue Jackets Look For Consistency as They Prepare For Jets


This is a game I’ve had circled on the schedule since it was released. Most of you know my hockey background, so it should come as no surprise that the Jets are the one team that I loathe, and wouldn’t mind one bit if the Columbus Blue Jackets do tonight what they did last season, which resulted in the firing of Claude Noel.

That was a wonderful, wonderful day.

But, I digress. I’m very happy with my current relationship with the CBJ, and the Jets are forever my mortal enemy #1. Wait, did I just say I’m happy with my current relationship with the Jackets? Because that needs a bit of clarification – I’m happy that they’re now mine. What I’m not happy with is how they’ve been playing. Which is bad. Like, really bad.

Like, 23rd in the league in goals per game and 30th in the NHL in goals against (granted, a lot of that was during Sergei Bobrovsky’s absence, but he was in goal for the four-goal game against Philly last time out). The Jackets, a full quarter of the way through the year, are still looking for their identity and trying to re-learn how to win. They’re getting guys back, sure, but they’re still missing a lot of fire power on the IR (Ryan Murray, Brandon Dubinsky, Fedor Tyutin), but still need to find ways to win games even without them.

The Jets, actually, aren’t playing that bad of hockey. In fact, they currently sit at fourth in the good ol’ Central Division (remember those days?), and are two points behind Chicago for third place. Ondrej Pavelec, good ol’ Moose (I still remember chanting his name in Philips Arena. Good times) is actually not doing too bad – a .917 save percentage and 2.29 GAA has helped lead the Jets to fourth in the NHL in goals allowed (2.2), and they’re really solid when down a man, coming in at 8th in the league (84.5 percent). Combat that with Columbus’ top-5 power play unit, and that might be the most interesting match up of the night. Having said that, however, he still is under .500 record wise at 7-8-2, and if the trend continues from the past week or so, it’ll actually be the 3-1-1 Michael Hutchinson in net tonight.

The Jets have three guys with more than 10 points so far (that were all Atlanta grown, thank you very much) in Blake Wheeler, Andrew Ladd and Bryan Little, and have a trio of guys who are right on the cusp with nine points.

While it would be nice to get things going, all I humbly ask of the CBJ tonight is they kick the living you know what out of the Jets. We can go back to mediocrity against some other team.

Next: HCTR is Unhappy With CBJ Inconsistencies