directory Light the Lamp - a Columbus Blue Jackets blog: Pre-game thoughts: Jackets look to continue road success

Countdown to Rick Nash's contract expiration:

Sunday, March 2, 2008

Pre-game thoughts: Jackets look to continue road success

7-3-1 and one over their past 11 on the road...

..and nope that is not and misprint and I am referring to the Columbus Blue Jackets.

The Jackets look to keep rolling on the road tonight as they take on the Edmonton Oilers.

Edmonton is hot though... RED hot.. They've won their past 3 games and are 6-4-0 over their past 10. They have a decent record at home as well going 18-14-1.

The Jackets meanwhile are coming off an absolutely huge win in Vancouver. With the deadline and "Foote-gate" getting the majority of the attention and after their lackluster performance versus San Jose at home on Wednesday the wheel look to be about an lug nut away from completely coming off.

To my surprise and probably a lot of fans out there Jackets came out and played maybe their most complete team game of the year and overcame a two goal deficit to knock off the Canucks in OT.

This game tonight should be another battle.

Keys to lighting em up

All aboard. If they show up and play like they did in Vancouver then they'll have a great chance to win this game. Unfortunately the Jackets tend to play down to teams below them in the standings so this is a big *if* here.

SCORE FIRST...yes, I know they didn't score first the past game but it never hurts for this squad to get the first tally on the board.

NO OT! Edmonton is off the hook in OT and especially the Shootout. Now a point would be nice but they Jackets really need to go for it in regulation.

Powerplay goals would be key. Both teams are very good on the PK (Oilers are 3rd, CBJ 5th) but both team's powerplays are horrible (CBJ 24th, Oil 27th). If the Jackets can get a PP goal that would go a long way towards two points.

Hemsky and Horcoff are the big guns for the Oil. Fortunately for the Jackets Horcoff is out with an injury. Hemsky is probably with a hand. He's the guy to contain for the Jackets.

Need more secondary scoring. Murray, Tarnstrom and Chimera stepped up in Vancouver....need more scoring by committee tonight tonight in Edmonton.

Leclaire goes again...need him to just do what he's been doin all year.

Interesting that Hitch went with a 2-1-2 some this past game. I wonder if he goes with that again tonight? Seemed to be pretty effective. Most of the year we've played a 1-2-2 (essentially the trap).

Would love to see more of this team sticking up for each other. Fritsche and Tollefsen had goes last game... which was a great sign of this team coming together and working for one another.

Game spotlight

Dick Tarnstrom faces his old team for the first time. Tarnstrom has been playing fantastic for us since the trade so lets see if he can keep up that level of play tonight.

Also Curtis Glencross will play the Jackets for the first time since he was dealt. He certainly had an impact on the Oil's 4th line providing some offense, energy and a willingness to drop the mits.


Also a bit of roster news for you - Freddy Modin is out tonight with a groin problem. Hitch will dress 7 d-men tonight.

8 o'clock start. Jackets are 5 points out of the final playoff spot with Colorado winning again last night. The good news is that alot of these teams the Jackets had game at hand are getting those games in and not pulling away much in the standings.

Jackets just need to focus on winning games and if they do that, the rest will take care of itself.

We'll find out soon how the boys come out.....I'm always a little worried about playing a team below us in the standings. The Jackets need to get on a roll here so we'll see if that can start tonight in Edmonton.

Great read on Z and how he's changed his career around this year in the Dispatch -- be sure to check it out!



1 comment:

Bethany said...

I read the blog post on Z and it gave me chills...I'm glad he is happy here and is playing so well, he had it in him the entire time, we just had to wait I suppose.