directory Light the Lamp - a Columbus Blue Jackets blog: Pre-game thoughts: losing skid must end tonight

Countdown to Rick Nash's contract expiration:

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Pre-game thoughts: losing skid must end tonight

The Jackets take on the streaking 10-7 Blackhawks tonight who are winners of their past 3 including a 5-2 thumping of the Blue Jackets last Wednesday night. The 8-6-3 Jackets, who have lost their last 4, look to end that streak tonight against a much improved Hawks team who is led by rookies Patrick Kane and Jonathan Toews.

This is must win game plain and simple - since this stretch of 8 straight against the cetnral began last week Jackets have gone 1-3-1 and the gap in points they once enjoyed over Nashville/St. Louis/Chicago has been quickly closed.

Keys to lighting em up

Coach Ken Hitchcock said it best in this mornings Dispatch - the Jackets don't have enough dynamic players to get by on skill alone, they must show up every night ready to compete. So the bottom line is that this team needs all 20 players in sync and focused ready to compete first and foremost.

Just as important is the defense must play better. They couldn't make 6 ft passes the last game against Nashville and were totally exposed on the back end. Hopefully that play is just an anomaly, although I would argue that they've played constantly terrible during this 4 game losing streak with the last game being the pinnacle of bad. Tonight they must get back on track, make quick smart transition passes, play strong positionally and play as a unit.

The Jackets don't want to get into a run and gun game with the 'hawks. Why? Because they just don't have the firepower to win games like that most nights. They've got to play this team similar to how they played Buffalo when they shut them down.

Offense has got to put some goals in the back of the net. Averaging 1.75 goals over their past 4 isn't gonna cut it. I don't care who scores em, just score em.

Shut down Kane and Toews.

The game tonight is a big one. Its definitely not panic time but the Jackets don't want to find themselves in an extended losing streak and piss away their good start. Now is the perfect time to string another winning streak together and to get on a roll and finish up the next 3 games against the central strong.


1 comment:

Matt said...

Looks like they got back up onto the horse. Woo!