directory Light the Lamp - a Columbus Blue Jackets blog: Another train wreck in music city

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Friday, February 1, 2008

Another train wreck in music city

That is the best way to describe the Jackets performance last night. It was a complete wreck.

The Jackets dug themselves and early 2-0 hole and couldn't recover, even as Nashville goaltender Chris Mason was not exactly on top of his game.

I don't know what it is about the Preds but they are in the Jackets craw. They just fall apart when the play them. The totally expose every weakness the Jackets have and derail them from their gameplan. I mean how many penalties did Darcy Hordichuk draw last night?

Lit it up

I don't think anyone from either side had particularly great games. Jason Arnott, Alexander Radulov and JP Dumont combined for some nice tic tac toe goals. The worked the slot like champs, especially on the PP. That was really about it.

Hey at least Alexander Ovechkin had 4 goals. Hopefully he got it out of his system by the time he plays here for the first time next Thursday. Lets see.... Ovechkin 43 goals, Nash 26. Both 1st overall picks...hmmm.

Dim the light

Nik Zherdev continues to be the only player who is bringing any kind of consistant offense to this team. Seriously, where would this team be without him? Scary thought.

Our most effective forward line last night. Brule-Brassard-Boll. Two rookies and 2nd year players. Scary thought.

Powerplay got a goal last night.

I hate to see Jared Boll taking on the heavy weights like Darcy Hordichuk. He more than held his own but asking that much of this kid night in and night out is biting off more than he can chew. He needs to stick to the middle weights and just ingore the heavies (easier said than done I know) and let them take a dumb penalty against him.

Busted bulb

Where to being...oh wait, I know. Adam Foote. That had to be the worst performance of his career....let alone as a Blue Jacket. I know he was battling the flu and I know in retrospect I'm sure everyone wishes they would have kept him out of the lineup...but man was he brutal. 3 penalties, and terrible play not getting the puck out on the 4th goal and -2.

He's not alone though. Hedja, Peca, Nash, Zherdev were all -2 on the night.

A friend of mine told me this stat this morning. Of the four centers dressed last night, they have recorded 0 goals in the past 20 games. Even adding Feds to that mix the 5 centers would only have a combined 3 goals in their past 20.

When was the last time Peca or Vyborny scored a goal? Peca hasn't scored a goal in the past 12 games. Vyborny has gone scoreless in 13 games. These are two guys who consistantly play in our top 6 and they zero goals combined in their past 12 games. Pathetic.

Paging Rick Nash? I think its time to start really taking a hard look at Nash. Outside of his spectacular goals against Phoenix...what has this guy done out there? He's been hardly noticable and doesn't seem to be generating much of any offense. Last night they said Nash has gone scoreless in the last 8 games on the road against Nashville. In the last 14 games Nash has 5g and 3a for 8 points -- not nearly good enough on an offensively starved team.

Malhotra. Will you please take a hit to make a play? The guy looks like a hockey player, he skates like a hockey player, but unfortunately he doesn't play like a hockey player. The only real thing this guy has done is excel in the faceoff circle. Yeah, yeah -- I know he had an assist last night ont he Fritsche goal - big whoop.

This team has got to stop living on their goaltenders. Pascal Leclaire can't be superman every night and when he has off games like he did against Phoenix and Nashville the offensive has got to step up. Unfortunately when you only have two players that have cracked the 10 goal plateau you are what you are.

Defensive transition exposed. This team just does not have enough skill on the blue line. It needs totally revamped this offseason and I think Howson and Hitch are extremely aware of this.

If I hear a player make an excuse that they lost this game because Jody Shelley was traded I'll blow a gasket. I love Shelley but he was a 4th line enforcer who wasn't even playing. If that is the kind of group we have then this team really is in deep trouble.

3 bright lights on the night

1. We got a powerplay goal.

2. Z was good again.

3. bout that PP goal? .

The season is definitely not over by any stretch and this team will remain competitive and in the hunt. However, its game like this when our current group is really exposed. There isn't enough skill on the backend and we just don't have enough guys who can score.

Regardless if we make the playoff or not I expect this roster to be completely revamped. We've revamped the coaching staff, the front office has been revamped, the foundation is in place --- next is its time to gut this roster.

I fully expect that to happen if not by the deadline, then by this offseason -- Howson could have as much as 25 million to get the job done with. That is even without ownership upping the payroll which I hope they strongly consider doing. Howson and Hitch know what it takes to win - they proven they can get the job done with a severly flawed roster -- now they've proven they can cook, give them plenty of money to go shop for their kind of grociereis.

Jackets are back it on Saturday night against the Wild. I fully expect a much stronger effort.

The Jackets finished January with a 7-7 record.


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