directory Light the Lamp - a Columbus Blue Jackets blog: Pre-game thoughts: Morale still down heading into Vancouver

Countdown to Rick Nash's contract expiration:

Friday, February 29, 2008

Pre-game thoughts: Morale still down heading into Vancouver

The Jackets continue to try to shake off the aftershocks felt by the trade deadline tonight in Vancouver.

Vancouver is a team that is 5 points ahead of the Jackets with two less games played. They sit 8th in the conference. Vancouver has lost their last game but are a whopping 6-1-3 over their past 10. They are just so-so at home going 17-11-4.

The Jackets meanwhile are also losers of their past game and are 4-4-2 in their last 10. They have been better on the road of late winning their past two in Montreal and Ottawa. They are 6-3-1 over their past 10 on the road.

Keys to lighting them up

Mentally prepare. These guys are all professionals but are also human beings and as much as they want to get be ready sometimes these things take time. However time is not on their side and if the Jackets have any hope left what-so-ever of making a push they have got to find their A game tonight in Vancouver.

Sedins. They spark the Canuck's offense and must be contained. Both have over 60 points. Can Klelsa/Hejda be our #1 shutdown - they'll have to be if the Jackets want to find success.

PK. Its been brutal lately and they have now dropped to 5th in the league. More of that and they can kiss this one good bye.

More offense. Vyborny finally got on the board....can he keep it up? Brule is getting some time on the top line -- can he keep taking steps? Its important right now to get contributions for everyone on this roster -- they need team scoring by committee as much as they need team defense -- it goes both ways.


Vancouver special teams. They are ranked 13th in both PP and PK -- translation that can play you any way you want. Tight game, blow out, physical, open up....this team can beat you in a lot of ways.

Take advantage of road momentum. This road trip could actually be just what the doctor ordered. Get away from the trade distraction...concentrate on regrouping as a team and redefining roles....lets keep it going on the road.

Game spotlight

Keep an eye on Freddy Modin and Nik Zherdev. Both players struggled mightily against the Sharks on Wednesday. Lets see if both can rebound or if they pack it away for the remainder of the year.


Team morale seems down as displayed by their lackluster effort against the San Jose Sharks at home. The question is how long will it take this team to get over this post trade deadline hangover?

A win tonight would certainly go a long way towards that.



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