directory Light the Lamp - a Columbus Blue Jackets blog: Pre-game thoughts: Jackets look to close 5th place gap

Countdown to Rick Nash's contract expiration:

Sunday, March 1, 2009

Pre-game thoughts: Jackets look to close 5th place gap

So I'm watching the Penguins put a serious beat down on the Stars today in their home rink.. I can't help but think my how nice it would be to see the Jackets do something similar in GM Place tonight.

Don't count on it.

This is going to be a goaltending dual... Whomever wins the game within the game goaltending battle should win this game.

Vancouver is hot too going 8-2 in their past 10. Its no coincidence that they have heated up as their goaltender's game has heated up.

This could be the second series sweep for the Jackets. They did it to Colorado earlier and with a 'W' tonight they could do it the Canucks which would certainly help their playoff drive.

* On paper these two teams are pretty similar. Both rely heavily on strong goaltending. Both have a couple of offensive cogs they also rely heavily on. Both have big lineups and play 3 zone hockey.

* This is a "well duh" statement but if the Jackets solve Luongo they win.

* An early goal would go a long way.

* Build off of that game in Edmonton. The Jackets did everything right but score in that game. If they can bring a similar effort any bury a few more pucks I love their chances.

* Don't give Hitch a reason not to roll 4 lines. Which means everyone must show the effort they had against Edmonton and dictate the pace of this game. If the boys get down the bench shrinks.

* Canucks have a decent PP ranked 15th in the league. The Jackets have the 16th ranked PK. Like most good PPs they like to work the pucks to the points for the bombs from guys like Ohlund, Edler and Bieska.

* Contain the Sedins. Got to watch that Sundin guy too!

* This is a game where the Jackets best players have to be their best players. In fact that can be said for the 20 remaining games this season.

* Don't get caught sleeping and looking towards getting home. I expect the Canucks to bring the high tempo right away and the Jackets must be ready to counter with energy of their own.

Can the Jackets match the same effort they gave in Edmonton? Will Hitch continue to all 4 lines?

Will we get an Umberger/Kesler rematch?

The Jackets have been getting all kinds of help in the standings of late but it doesn't matter b/c if they take care of their own business and win tough games like tonight's they'll control their own destiny.

Puck drops at 8 EST.




Michael said...

i almost cant watch this game anymore.. sweet jesus we are playing TERRIBLE

Pub said...

Playing like crapola. Perfect.