directory Light the Lamp - a Columbus Blue Jackets blog: Dallas Stars @ Columbus Blue Jackets 10/17/07 7:00 P.M. EST

Countdown to Rick Nash's contract expiration:

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Dallas Stars @ Columbus Blue Jackets 10/17/07 7:00 P.M. EST

Probable lines:


Nash Peca Zherdev
Glencross Fedorov Vyborny
Chimera Malhotra Brule
Fritsche Novotny Boll

Hejda Foote
Hainsey Klesla
Russell Tollefsen



Hagman Modano Lehtinen
Morrow Ribeiro Eriksson
Lundqvist Halpern Miettinen
Jokinen Barnes Winchester

Daley Zubov
Norstrom Robidas
Niskanen Boucher


Game Notes:

Dallas is another team in a long line that has pretty much owned the Blue Jackets in the all time series between the two. Columbus is 6-17-1 against the Stars and 4-8 in Nationwide Arena. The good news is that Columbus went 3-1 against Dallas last season.

Fredrik Modin is definitely out for tonight's game due to a groin injury. Curtis Glencross will get his first chance to suit up tonight in his stead. Rick Nash is expected to be in the lineup after being held out of practice with groin trouble yesterday.

Fredrik Norrena will make his second start of the season tonight. He lost his first start in Minnesota 3-2 and has a good, albiet short, history against Dallas. He'll look to bounce back and backstop this team to a win this evening.

As mentioned Curtis Glencross will see his first action tonight. "GlenX" is a 24 year old winger whom the coaching staff really seems to like. He brings a high energy straight line hockey game to the lineup. He's not afraid to bang and dig pucks out along the boards and if need be, drop the mitts. He is a Hitchcock type player but needs to show more offense to stay in the show.

Jared Boll also returns to the lineup tonight. Sad to say that this 21 year old rookie's in-your-face agitating game was sorely missed against the Avalanche but that's where this team finds itself. He is certainly a welcome addition back in this lineup. For now he slotted to play with Novotny and Fritsche.

The Dispatch has Duvie Westcott getting scratched tonight on defense but I've heard rumblings that it would be Novotny who takes a seat in the press box tonight. If that is the case Hitch may go with 7 defensemen and 11 forwards tonight.
Speaking of defensemen, Adam Foote and Jan Hejda really need to bounce back after a horrible outing against Colorado. They will match up against the Stars' top line and PP unit and need shut them down.

Michael Peca gets his shot at the #1 center spot tonight and Nikolai Zherdev has been moved up to play opposite Nash on the top line.

Speaking of Nash, he has gone pointless in 3 games since his big 4 point opening night. This team needs #61 to get on the score sheet tonight although even pointless, he has been playing pretty good hockey - just a little snake bitten.

David Vyborny has been moved off the line with Nash and will play with Glencross and Fedorov. Vyborny has struggled a bit early on and the coaching staff is looking for a little more energy and fire from #9. He's known to score in bunches so perhaps tonight will be his night to break out.

The Stars are 2-2-2 and have scored 16 goals while also giving up 16 against which compared to a start of 8-2 a season ago is not impressive. It has been reported that both Mary Turco and Mike Smith are injured so 3rd string goaltender Tobias Stephen may get the start tonight.

The Jackets will need to contain Nikolas Hagman of the Stars who is off to a hot start scoring 5 goals in 6 games.

The Dispatch has a nice article on Mike Modano this morning.

This is a big game for both teams as they look to creep above that .500 record. For the Jackets they should be out to prove that the performance against the Avalanche was just an off night and not the norm. They will be looking to pick up where the left off in the first two home games and that's strong positional hockey where everyone works for the goalie. They need to create turnovers off of checks and then capitalize on their opportunities offensively.

The game really can make a pretty big statement tonight and set the tone for the rest of the season. I know its early to be saying that but the Jackets cannot afford to fall into a losing spiral - they must respond tonight.

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