directory Light the Lamp - a Columbus Blue Jackets blog: Manny Mal-HOT-ra!

Countdown to Rick Nash's contract expiration:

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Manny Mal-HOT-ra!

Not sure what is going on but Manny Malhotra is doing his best Brett Hull impersonation notching 4 goals in a variety of ways the past 2 games.....and as Hitch said "where in the hell has this been all year?".... In fact if you throw the assist he had as well and he's got 5 points over his last two -- I think we can consider him hot!

Not to be outdone of course is Rick Nash or Freddy Norrena. Nash picked up 1g, 2a for a team leading 64 points. Freddy Norrena collected his first shutout of the year and his 2nd straight win.

The win over the Flames marks the 10th shutout of the year for the Jackets.

Lit it up

The entire team came to play last night. It was a fantastic suffocating 60 minute effort. Everyone played a part in collecting the two points.

Line of Nash - MalHOTtra - Fritsche. They combined for a +9 and 7 points. The worked hard, took the body, made smart plays and converted on their chances. They also went head to head against Calgary's top line of Iginla - Langkow - Hueselius and shut them down.

Klesla - Hejda. Both were +3 and played a big part in shutting down that Iginla line as well. Klelsa also collected an assist. Does anyone really miss #52 with the way these two have stepped up since he quit on this team? I don't.

Physical play. With the trash Fritsche talked in the paper the Jackets could have set themselves up to lay an egg - but they didn't - they all competed, they all stood up for each other, they outhit the Flames 29-23. Fritsche also backed up his talk with a solid effort.

Freddy Norrena. Really was an unspectacular shutout but was one nonetheless. He made all the stops he should and there is one area where he is head and shoulders above Leclaire and that his stickhandling -- he can really be an asset back there when he handles the puck unlike Leclaire.

It was cool to see Iginla and Nash lined up to one another on faceoffs -- but sporting their team's C's.

Jared Boll. Man I love the way this kid competes....and its not a dumb blockhead compete either. He gets under team's skins...he backs it up with his fists and he rarely takes a dumb penalty for his efforts. I love to have 10 Jared Boll's on this team.

THEY SCORED FIRST!! Seriously, how much better does this team play when they get that first goal when compared to when they give up the first one? Night and day.

Dim the light

Much better effort from Zherdev last night. Something tells me a certain coach whose name starts with "H" and ends with "H" lit a fire.

Kris Russell. I think this kid is playing much better lately and is looking a lot more comfortable out there. He's moving the puck well and really utilizing his supreme skating.

Jackets PK was perfect last night killing off the 2 minor penalties it faced.
Okay who else noticed that Nash wound up and actually took a slap shot last night? I bout fell out of my seat.

Busted bulbs

The Jackets powerplay continues to stink.

Attendance was weak. I hate seeing all those fans dressed up as blue seats. They are missing some great hockey even though the chances of the Jackets making that "P" word are bleak. The crowd that was there though was loud which was cool.

3 bright lights on the night
1. Norrena - anytime a goalie gets a shutout in this league I'll give them the brightest light
2. Manny/Nash/Fritsche - that line really stepped up and combined for 7 points and +9
3. Team - played 60 minutes and more importantly they played for each other out there

The win moves the Jackets to 33-29-11 record with 77 points with 9 games remaining.

The Jackets can't savor this one very long as they head into Detroit who are certainly looking for a better result after losing a game they should have won in Columbus this past Sunday.

It will be interesting to see how the boys respond on the 2nd of a back2back against the best team in the league.


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