Columbus Blue Jackets look to continue good play as Vancouver comes to Nationwide Arena


Please please please don’t let the loss on Tuesday fool you – the Columbus Blue Jackets looked good, and are getting better. They’ll look to correct the mistakes made that resulted in a loss to the Winnipeg Jets, but the competition this time around will be a bit tougher, as the CBJ will welcome in the Vancouver Canucks for a bit of post-Thanksgiving action. Also, it’s third jersey night! Who doesn’t love Columbus Blue Jackets third jersey night?

Anyway, the Canucks come to NWA with a 15-6-1 record, good enough for 2nd place in the Pacific Division, trailing only the West-leading Ducks from Anaheim. The last time the Canucks lost actually was against the Ducks, in a shootout, and are on a four game point streak, having won two in a row. The Jackets better have quite the gameplan for the “Sedin Line” – the Canucks’ top line that consists of Vancouver’s leading points holder (Henrik Sedin), leading goal scorer (Radim Vrbata) and second-leading scorer (Daniel Sedin), or it could be a long night.

Henrik comes in with 21 points followed right behind Daniel with 2o. A bulk of those points come from assists, and Vrbata is the finisher of the line, having 10 goals on the year, which leads the team. With a couple of days separating Vancouver from their last game, I’d expect to see starting goalie – a little-known guy by the name of Ryan Miller – between the pipes. However, if the Canucks want to save him for tomorrow night’s game against Detriot (which I could totally see happening), CBJ will get back-up treatment…again…with Eddie Lack going between the pipes.

If it weren’t for 39 seconds worth of mental lapses for the Jackets, they’d have found themselves on the winning side Tuesday, but the theme we continue to hammer on this year is that hockey is a three period, 60 minute game, and rarely – if at all this year – have we seen Columbus play that full 60 minutes yet.

However, they came out of the third period Tuesday strong, nearly as strong as any period this season, and hopefully can carry that momentum into the opening moments of tonight. Also, it’d be just too storybook if it were to happen, but Artem Anisimov could use a huge game with trade-speculation swirling.

It certainly wont be easy for Columbus tonight, but they have to turn things around soon, right? (I feel like I’ve said that a million times) Well, why not start tonight, and prove they can beat a top-of-the-league team? Puck drops at seven, and until then, let’s talk about it either in a comment below or on twitter @UnionandBlue.

Next: Is Artem Anisimov on The Move?