Game six will come down to the Columbus Blue Jackets staying out of the box and their veterans showing up.
Hockey is a simple game with some luck sprinkled in. Winning game six will require the Columbus Blue Jackets to keep it simple and get a little bit of puck luck. To avoid elimination the Columbus Blue Jackets need their veterans to step up and to stay out of the penalty box.
Fans are as tired of reading that last part as I am typing it at this point in the series. The Jackets have been unable to stay out of the penalty box against the Capitals and it has cost them dearly.
The CBJ have allowed at least four power play opportunities every game thus far and the Caps have taken advantage. Washington has at least one goal on the man advantage in every game thus far and it has been the difference.
In a series that has gone to overtime four out of the five games, one goal is everything. If the Jackets can cut down the chances the Caps have on the power play and shut them down on the man advantage they will win the game, plain and simple.
Outside of game four, he Jackets have dominated at 5v5 in this series. That is a strength they carried over from the regular season. They finished the season eighth in the league in corsi for at even strength according to NaturalStatTrick.com.
Veteran Presence Needed
Game six is going to be a pressure packed game the likes of which most of the Columbus Blue Jackets have never experienced. Even the veterans on this team. Players like Nick Foligno, Cam Atkinson, Thomas Vanek and Brandon Dubinsky need to step up and deliver.
This cast of characters hasn’t produced at all over the last two games. Their disappearance is directly tied to the Jackets flailing and falling behind three games to two to the Capitals. If the Jackets hope to force a game seven in D.C., the veteran leadership group on this squad has to step up and deliver.
The formula for success is simple. Stay out of the box and have your leadership group deliver. Sprinkle some luck in and the Columbus Blue Jackets will be able to force a game seven in Washington.