directory Light the Lamp - a Columbus Blue Jackets blog: Pre-game thoughts and more...

Countdown to Rick Nash's contract expiration:

Friday, October 3, 2008

Pre-game thoughts and more...

I'm going to combine a few things in this post today.

First off can you believe the season opener for the Jackets is only 1 week away!!

In fact the actual NHL season kicks off tomorrow in Prague and Sweden. I'm not quite sure if these games will be on NHL Center Ice (mine isn't showing it yet) but one would think they would be.

Update: The games are actually on NHL Network.

Okay now to tonight. The Jackets take on the Wild tonight in their final pre-season home game. Here are the lineup courtesy of puck-rakers:


F1: Rick Nash -- R.J. Umberger -- Kristian Huselius
F2: Jason Chimera -- Jiri Novotny -- Jake Voracek
F3: Craig MacDonald -- Derek MacKenzie -- Adam Pineault
F4: Tom Sestito -- Manny Malhotra -- Jared Boll

D1: Jan Hejda -- Fedor Tyutin
D2: Richard Matvichuk -- Aaron Rome
D3: Kris Russell -- Christian Backman

G1: Pascal Leclaire
G2: Fredrik Norrena


F1: Colton Gillies -- Benoit Pouliot -- Marian Gaborik
F2: P-M Bouchard -- Eric Belanger -- Owen Nolan
F3: Stephane Veilleux -- James Sheppard -- Craig Weller
F4: Derek Boogaard -- Krys Kolanos -- Cal Clutterbuck

D1: Justin Falk -- Kim Johnson
D2: John Scott -- Brent Burns
D3: Nick Schultz -- Martin Skoula

G1: Niklas Backstrom
G2: Barry Brust

Filatov was orginally slated to play tonight but a late lineup swtich by Hitch has Tom Sestito replacing him. The reason being that Minny is icing a big lineup and they don't want Nikita head becoming a permanent fixture on the half boards at Nationwide Arena quite yet.

Minnesota is 4-1 in their 5 pre-season tilts. What interesting is they've only scored 13 goals in those contents but have only given up 10. They certainly walk a thin line. In contrast the Jackets have scored 18 and given up 18. Of course when you factor our the 7 they through up against a B league Chicago team those numbers don't look so impressive.

Both teams are going with a regular heavy lineup. Umberger gets his shot tonight between Nash and Huselius. Novonty moves up into the top 6 which IMO he's earned this pre-season.

Rome and Matvichuk get what may be their final opportunity to impress the coaches to earn that 7th or 8th spot. On offense MacDonald, MacKenzie and Pineault get that same opportunity.

Leclaire has improved in his second game from his first so lets see if he can keep that trend going.

Ohio State kicks off their season with a warm up game at the OSU ice rink tomorrow. Here is a great season preview that's up over on

..and yes, according to them Zac Dalpe will make his debut with the Buckeyes at 2:04 P.M. (yep, apparently its :04 exactly according to their schedule) tomorrow.

I may have to figure out a way to swing down there for this one...hmmm.

They open their season at home versus Miami next Friday.

Fedorov back to defense? According to this article that is what the Caps are experimenting with:

"He's lasted in this league all these years because he's extremely smart. He can handle the puck. He sees the ice. Everybody's looking now for those really good puck-moving defensemen because the game is about moving the puck and scoring goals and he's a guy that can do it as well as anybody.''

Fedorov is expected to get some more work in by partnering defenseman Jeff Schultz in Friday's exhibition game against the visiting Philadelphia Flyers. They were paired together at practice Thursday.

"We're just flirting with the idea,'' Fedorov said.

Hmmm.... certainly sounds familiar.

Finally former Blue Jacket 2nd round pick Joakim Lindstrom was put on waivers by Anaheim and has been claimed by none other than the Chicago Blackhawks according to the Ducks web site.



Max said...

I mentioned this on Puck-Rakers, but I find putting Matvichuk in the lineup to be extremely interesting. They certainly are giving him a long, hard look. I wonder if our rookies might get snubbed by the big, slow, old, wiley veteran? Part of me wants to see him, another part wants him to be cut loose. It'll be interesting, that's for sure.

Shaggy said...

Don't get the NHL Network, but they're showing it on the CBC, which I do get here in Toledo. Works for me.

Anonymous said...

One of the games is also on Versus on Sunday (rangers game).

Anonymous said...

Just center ice says it will start showing games on the 9th.

Also there will be a free preview of Center Ice through the 15th.