directory Light the Lamp - a Columbus Blue Jackets blog: Jackets buried in Beantown

Countdown to Rick Nash's contract expiration:

Monday, December 17, 2007

Jackets buried in Beantown

Just back from the game in Boston. Lets just say the good folks of Boston weren't the only ones buried by at least a foot of snow as the Jackets were plowed by a final score of 2-0.

Lit it up

Boston's wicked smothering defense. The shots on goal are a little misleading as even though the Jackets outshot the Bruins 32-18 but the majority of those were of the low quality type as Boston's team defense did not give up man quality looks.

Alex Auld. Anytime a goaltender can get a shutout in this league they had a good night. Auld made the stops he should.

Jacket fans. There were quite a few Jacket fans who made the trip to watch the boys in Beantown. Just unfortunate we couldn't even cheer for a goal. My flight was probably half full of the Jacket faithful. Way to represent!

Boston. City was fun, albeit very snowed in. The home fans treated us great and we loved our time at The Fours, Sullivans and couple of other stops we made before and after the game.

If you've never seen Chara live...make it a priority next time they are in town. This guys is a freak of nature and absolutely H-U-G-E.
Our seats were aweomse... center ice about 15 rows up...very nice!

Dim the light

Freddy Norrena deserved a better fate. He gave up one even strength goal and that was it. Their second goal was an empty netter. Once again, no goal support for the netminders.

The 3rd period. The team decided to play in the 3rd but to little to late. The Bruins were just to smothering.

PK was good again not allowing any goals on 3 chances. They did get some help from the refs as they called a hooking penalty right as the Bruins scored.

Skybus - first time flying with them and it was a great experience. Highly recommend it. They have quite a few destinations where the Jackets play -- makes it easy and cost friendly for some quick road trips.

Lots of compliments from the home town fans regarding how sharp the Jackets jerseys looked. (Hey, I'm reachin here in this category as there really isn't much more positive to talk about from a team standpoint)

Busted bulbs

Overall just a poor team effort. As Hitch has been quoted in the paper, its not just one person but the entire team. The Jackets have yet to string two wins together since October.

Nasher. Guy is scoreless in 4 straight games and as the Dispatch points out today, he's hurtin with a number of injuries. Not the kind that sideline you but they have definitely taken the toll on 61's impact out there....and as 61 goes, so does the Jackets. We need him healthy and if that means sitting him for a couple of games then so be it.

I could go straight down the lineup in terms of how had poor efforts as the list is a long one but to me its the offense that is struggling the most. When the defense can hold a team to one goal for damn near 60 minutes then the offense has to come up big -- instead we get no shows from everyone. Really only Nash and Z had any kind of good looks. Fedorov & Chimera were especially invisible yet again out there.

Boll-Lucic fights. Ouch. Boll definitely caught the bad end of that one. Lucic did have a couple of inches and about 20 pounds on him and it showed.

Powerplay struggles. Once again no help from the PP. The Jackets had 5 chances, including 3 in the third period and nothing. Unacceptable really.

Jackets out hit 19 to 14 which is typically a bad sign for the team.

Jackets also out classed in the face off circle as the Bruins won 56% of the draws.

3 bright lights on the night

1. PK - 3 for 3 on the kill
2. Norrena - only allowed 1 goal off of 18 shots
3. Jackets fans - represented well in Boston for a team that has never had any success

Portzline had a good blog entry regarding the state of this team at this point. He talks about the cycle the Jackets have found themselves in since the sizzling 8-3 start. Basically they get prodded by the coaching staff come out and win one, play ok the next game and then get thumped....then the cycle resets.

Perhaps the Jackets just don't have the horses to play at a highly competitive level every fact I think that is becoming increasingly obvious....but Hitch will never give up on this squad and will milk this cow for all its worth and leave the player personnel management up to the GM....If this team misses the playoffs it will not be because of coachign not doing its job.

Its up to Howson to go out and get some pieces if they really want to make a push now this year......the bad apples will eventually be weeded out... I expect most to be gone by next season but the process cannot happen overnight...not in a market the size of Columbus where every penny counts and they don't have the luxury of say a Philadelphia to freely spend to the cap. Howson cannot just make a deal to make one either - he has to maxamize his resources and unfortunately those resources are not going to be maximized until closer to the deadline. Until then I suspect we are gonna have to live with what we've got.

I do think right about now a small trade could really make an impact on re-energizing this squad but that is for Howson to decide.

Right now though the Jackets just aren't playing good enough. Through a critical stretch in December the Jackest are just 3-2-2 and that just isn't good enough to get into the playoffs.

Next year you can bet this team is gonna be full of guys that will compete at a high level every night - that I can guarantee you.

Also - why is Gilbert Brule still up in Columbus? He's not playing...he's not developing...all he's doing is practicing. Send this kid down asap! I wouldn't mind getting a look at Konopka...his game would really compliment our 4th line. Although I hear his hand still isn't fully healed.

Jackets are back at at home against a very physical Calgary team tomorrow night. Lets see if the Jackets can bounce back.


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