directory Light the Lamp - a Columbus Blue Jackets blog: Pascal to start tomorrow + Foote feelings

Countdown to Rick Nash's contract expiration:

Friday, October 12, 2007

Pascal to start tomorrow + Foote feelings

Accroding to the Dispatch Pascal Leclaire will get the start on Saturday in Colorado. Hard to argue against that decision as Leclaire has stopped every shot he's seen thus far this year earning back to back home shutouts.

Colorado will be a big test for Leclaire as they are typically a strong home team (they went 22-16-3 last year) and are led by a high powered offense. This year they have started out 2-1 (2-0 at home) scoring 10 goals and allowing 9. Contrast that to Columbus who is also 2-1 and has scored 9 goals but only given up 3.

The good news for Columbus is that Colorado's special teams aren't all that special quite yet. They've only killed 71% of their penatlies and are operating at 16% efficiency on the PP. Lets hope Columbus can keep that bottled up.

Colorado does have one offensive player who is off to a particularly good start in 2nd year player Paul Statsny -- he's racked up 8 points (4g 4a) in just 3 games.

Colorado also plays tonight against at St. Louis against a Blue team that is off to a 2-1 start. Keep an eye on that one as the second half of back to backs are usually a challenge. The Jackets will be traveling to Colardo coming off a win Wednesday and three days rest.

Speaking of the Avalanche, there is a piece on former Colorado Avalanche and current Columbus Blue Jackets captain Adam Foote in the Dispatch this morning. There was an interview Foote gave to the Colorado media over the summer that sparked a little controversy when it was reported that Foote ((pictured right)) regretted leaving Colorado and signing with Columbus. Here are some snippets from the Michael Arace piece:

On June 27, at a charity golf tournament in Colorado, Blue Jackets captain Adam Foote was asked whether he would ever entertain the possibility of returning to the Avalanche. The answer, on camera, went like this:

"Right now, that's a tough question, just because I'm so dedicated right now and focused with Columbus. Yeah, I mean, I'd be lying to you, and I think you are all aware that we love Colorado and we wish we never left, but we did, it's unfortunate, it's a business -- and one day, you never know ..."

After the Blue Jackets beat Phoenix on Wednesday in Nationwide Arena, Foote was asked about what he said.

This was Foote's response: "My kids were born there, my wife loved it there, I loved it there, we won there. That's the truth. I left a beautiful spot. You're damn right I miss 305 sunny days a year. But what no one has talked about is the things I said about being dedicated to my job and trying to help this team get better -- and winning. Here. That's important to me."

He also said, "There were times when I wasn't sure what I was going to do next."

"When I came here and (Tyler) Wright left, (Geoff) Sanderson left, (Scott) Lachance left, (Luke) Richardson was on his way out, and there were a couple of other guys on the way out, I felt like, 'Oh, God, there's the guts,' " Foote said. "OK, there it is, eight transitions. That's like, whoa."

One of his former teammates, a close friend he won't name, urged him to demand a trade.
"I just felt that if I did, everything I was saying would mean nothing," Foote said. "That's just not me."

His father told him: "Don't jump ship. Just don't jump ship. That's not the way we do it."

His wife told him, "You just have to get on top again."

Now I'm a huge Adam Foote fan, I love his rugged style of play which has unfortunately been curtailed due to the crackdown in the "new NHL". I was just as excited as the next fan when the news broke that he choose Columbus as his NHL team coming out of the lockout.

That said, I read this piece and it screams to me that he totally regrets coming to this market and that all he and his family think about are the "good ole days back in Colorado".

In some ways I can't blame him. Foote matured as a man and started his family in Colorado. His roots will always be there as well as many memories of playing for championship teams in that city. He suffered through two miserable seasons here in Columbus. That said he followed the money and chose Columbus and that's a decision he should live with and embrace. This team invested a lot in him and gave him a big playing and leadership role - I'm sure they aren't exactly thrilled with the value he's returned for their dollar.

I'm sure he was sold a bogus bill of goods from former GM Doug MacLean (who could sell sand to an Egyptian in the Sahara) and things weren't as expected when he got here but c'mon -- Tyler Wright, Geoff Sanderson, Luke Richardson and Scott Lachance? They weren't the future or "guts" of this team and they certainly weren't the name he's was slinging when he got here -- it was Rick Nash, Rusty Klesla and Nikolai Zherdev that he was excited about.

I think he knows exactly what the problem was, as do most fans, but that problem has been fixed. Its time to stop dwelling on the past and focus on the future. That goes for players, management and the fans. This team is pointed in the right direction -- finally -- and now its time for our captain to lead it.


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