I'm a little worried, folks. It's probably nothing, but tonight's contest is the perfect trap game. The Blues started to play down to the level of a lesser team in Dallas. That's an old bad habit for the Blues, but one that needs to be broken. Now that there's been a few days off, the Blues *should* be firing on all cylinders again. That would mean dominating a team like the Jackets. My fear is that it's just too damn easy to look past tonight and instead focus on the Friday night game in Detroit. Dismiss Columbus too easily, and they will bite you in the ass.
The Enemy: If T.J. Oshie looks a little lost tonight, it is probably because his favorite target isn't on the ice. The "franchise player" for the BJs, Rick Nash was (finally) dealt to the Rangers for Brandon Dubinsky and Artem Anisimov (plus a prospect and a pick). The Jackets are still looking to replace Nash's scoring: 3 players share the team lead in goals - with 2 each. The overall points leader is defenseman Fedor Tyutin (1-4-5).
Question marks hang over their goaltending as well. Sergei Bobrovsky has posted a 2-1-1 record and .923 save percentage in his 4 starts. Steve Mason has made 3 starts, with an 0-3-0 record and .880 save percentage. Bob the Goaler has kept them in games, but has not seen much goal support.
JD will sure have his work cut out for him over the next few years.
Puck Rakers (team blog from the Columbus Dispatch)
Also, I'd like to draw your attention to the GameTime GetTogether that is happening tomorrow night. The FanShot with the details is HERE. Come watch the game tomorrow night with us at The Post in Maplewood!
Final Verse: Since this is in the Eastern time zone, the puck drops at 6:00 St Louis time. Plan ahead accordingly. The TV broadcast is on Fox Sports MW, and the radio call is, as always, on KMOX 1120. This is your last night of the free preview of NHL Center Ice. Until then, this is your pregame warmup. Gather here and start warming up the hate machine for CBus. Above all else, don't let them mess up your soccer game.
Something unpleasant to think about, but important to remember: it wasn't so long ago, (Nov 2010) that the Blues got off to a hot start, but had the wheels fall off in Columbus. Those who do not remember the past are condemned to repeat it.
Blue @ Blue Jackets 11/10/10 (via NHLVideo)