By Tom T
Five straight losses. The two biggest starts in CBJ history are on the verge of being traded. Cam gets hit by a puck in the face and has to sit out. CHICKEN LITTLE THE SKY IS FALLING!
Blow it all up and let’s plan for next season already. Can we get a little optimism around the Blue Jackets again? I mean they aren’t the Cleveland Browns. Ha! That was a cheap shot, sorry Browns fans, just meant as a joke. But truly, Browns fans are more optimistic than CBJ fans.
Quick assessment of where C-Bus stands today, 51 games into the season.
Fifty-nine points, good enough to make the playoffs if the season ended today.
Seven points behind the Metropolitan leading New York Islanders and 3 points clear of Buffalo and Carolina for the final Wild Card position.
No major injuries (jinx).
Thirty-one(+) games of hockey left in the season.
While it has all seemed to go south over the last two weeks, a single win and two points can give the team some breathing room in the Wild Card chase and tighten the race with the Caps, Pens and Isles.
In comparison, look at the Flyers. They dug themselves such a hole that even with an 8-game win streak and claiming 18 points in their last 10 games are still 5 points behind for the last playoff spot. Momentum has a huge role in sports. Philly and C-Bus look like two teams headed in opposite directions. But, a CBJ win over COL and ARI coupled with a Flyers loss to LAK would result in a 9-point gap between the two. I’m not saying it will happen that way, but it very well could. Then who do you want to be cheering for? My point is that while it looks bleak at this very moment, one win can make it look much better. Let’s not give up playoff aspirations because of one 5 game stretch.
Vs. Colorado Avalanche
Top line looks unbelievable. Rest of the team is suspect. Avs have been underachieving. Where have we heard this before? Sounds similar to the last matchup against the Blues. Can C-Bus return a different result in Denver? Hope so.
Key to this game will be one of two things. First, the CBJ getting the first goal and playing with a lead. I know they led in the Jets game before losing but, they play more confident from ahead – as do most teams. Second, reaction to COL taking the lead or scoring first. Can they react positively and fight for the next goal? That is what everyone is waiting to see.
My last two ‘game preview’ posts reported a lineup that didn’t match what was on the ice come game time. So, I’m not even going to guess. What we do know is Boone is out 1 – 3 weeks, Duby and Murray are a little banged up and Duclair is in the dog house. We are not close enough to the deadline to speculate about healthy scratches getting traded.
Oh, and I will admit when am wrong and make a bad suggestion. Anderson to the top line didn’t look so hot as an encore performance. Probably got the team all out of sync for at least an entire period and had them playing from behind all night against St. Louis. Seems he’s not quite ready for that spot on a nightly basis.
Other games to keep an eye on:
Islanders at Bruins
Wild at Sabres
Hurricanse at Penguins