directory Light the Lamp - a Columbus Blue Jackets blog: Brassard out with "flu-like symptoms"... yeah right! (Updated)

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Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Brassard out with "flu-like symptoms"... yeah right! (Updated)

According to Puck-rakers Derick Brassard is out with "flu-like symptoms". As Tom Reed hints at in his blog I call shenanigans on that diagnosis.

I didn't see Brassard at the season ticket holder event last night and I immediately thought something may going on here. Of course then I thought to myself that Nikita Filatov wasn't there either so maybe it was nothing.

What I did see, however, was the cheap shot to the head Brassard took while going hard after a play behind Chicago's net in the 3rd period of Monday's game. He was very woozy and struggled mightily to get back in the play so its not a shock when I read that report from the Dispatch.

Losing a winger in Torres for an extended period of time is one thing but to lose Brassard is another issue entirely. This team can ill afford to suffer any long term losses down the middle - espescially in their top 6.

Hopefully Brass is just out a couple of days and its just a minor thing but anytime you hear of head injuries (or "flu-like symptoms") the red flag certainly goes up as, from what they say, once you get one concussion the risk of more increases substantially.

For now, that game against Chicago's "B" team appears much more like a loss at this point than an expected blowout win.

Puck-rakers has a new post up saying that they have confirmed that it is indeed the flu. After seeing his head get rattled with my own eyes on Monday I'm still not sure I buy it....but if he's scheduled to be in the lineup again this pre-season it can't be anything that serious which is good news.

The key will be to see if he gets into any of these remaining games.

A comment in the previous post (thanks Jeff!) pointed me in the direction of this Western Conference preview by John Buccigross.

Bucci has us ranked 10th and here are some highlights of what he had to say:

The Blue Jackets play such a safe, defensive system, they don't ask their D-men to do a lot. A reason to pick the Jackets to make the postseason is the positives that we talked about, and the fact they have over $8 million in cap room. They can add that top-level offensive defenseman who could really make them a dynamic team.

Bucci is one of the few over at the 'Nquirer that I take serious when it comes to hockey. The man is very passionate and knowledgeable about the game. Okay -- and he's an Ohio guy too so that counts for somethin.

Anyhow... not a bad review... I see the Jackets finishing anywhere from 6th to 11th and if your on the outside looking in and had to make a prediction on this squad I think most would side with just missing the post-season because quite frankly...they have to show it on the ice before folks start giving them the benefit of the doubt.

The positive that I've seen in most of these previews are that the "experts" have taken into account the drastic changes this team has made and just about all think that finally this team is right there on the cusp of being a squad that can challenge for the post-season.

Speaking of ESPN. According to this article ESPN wants back in the NHL broadcast picture:

ESPN’s content guru John Skipper says he is going to make a concerted effort to add even more live sports coverage across all of the network’s media platforms while cutting back on scripted series, reality shows, original movies and other types of more general sports entertainment programming.

“We have found that what sports fans really care about, and why they come to ESPN properties is to watch live games,” said Skipper, the company’s vp of content. ESPN’s Sept. 16 Monday Night Football telecast drew 18.6 million viewers, the largest cable audience ever.

Skipper said he will continue to pursue deals for more major college games, and will look to get additional rights to major professional tennis and golf events when they become available. Reclaiming the National Hockey League is also on his to-do list. The NHL is slated to run on Versus through the 2010-2011 season.

It appears ESPN is coming back around to what achieved them success in the first place and that sure wasn't "Rome is Burning", "Around the Horn" or those clowns at "PTI" - it was live sports, highlight shows of live sports and pre/post game shows.

I'm not sure about the rest of you but the only thing I watch on ESPN anymore are live sports. I hardly ever watch Sportscenter on that network and a lot of it has to do with the way they have treated the NHL and hockey in general the past few years. Give me FSN Final Score any day.

My question is this though - why the sudden change of strategy at ESPN? Obviously there is new leadership but I also wonder if its because a network like Versus is becoming a contender? Are ratings down in Bristol? Are viewers tired of the "original" programming? I guess ESPN has gotten tired of trying (or realized its not working) to become the MTV of sports?

To tell you the truth I've been very happy with the coverage Versus has provided and I hope the NHL continues that relationship. I think it would be very hard at this point to get the NHL to leave that network with the treatment they've received thus far.

Now perhaps a multi-network deal could be worked out in the future and at the end of the day lets not kid ourselves, its all about the pesos.



Anonymous said...

coming home from the game on Monday, I heard that the NHL is making it a policy that injuries not get specified, even more so than the old playoff injury "scam" of upper and lower body injury


Todd G said...

The SI power rankings are out and they have us 25th.

This guy thinks the Jackets are moving "backwards". What a clown!!

I understand the wait and see approach by most media members, but "backwards". Ridiculous!!

Here is the link.

Rick said...

Here's two articles I found pretty interesting...

"The Hockey News’ Goalie Confidence Index...
Rank: 12
Score: 179.4
Another young goaltender who made noise in ’07-08, Pascal Leclaire was lights-out when it came to shutout percentage, leading all starters at 16.7 percent, though getting pulled in seven of 52 contests took a bit of the shine off. Fredrik Norrena will get his share of starts as well, where he can show off a top-20 finish in penalty-kill save percentage while attempting to hide his overall save percentage (56th in the league)."


This next one, you get a mention (again!) from Puck Daddy...

"Why your local newspaper chooses not to cover the NHL.....The story doesn't mention the Columbus Dispatch, which has two beat writers, a columnist, two blogs and a podcast dedicated to the Columbus Blue Jackets. Then again, the paper owns a piece of the team..."


Anonymous said...

LTL, I know your skeptical, and rightly so.

But keep in mind. Who is coming off of a Upper Respitory illness?

We could very well be seeing the beginning of the plague in the locker room again. Again.

LTL said...

Anonymous. True.

For me though seeing the shot Brass took to the noggin right in front of me with my own eyes -- that is really where my skepticism comes from.

At the end of the day, regardless of what they want to call it, I just hope this kid is okay and its not a concussion b/c those things can be brutal.