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Category: Columbus-Blue-Jackets

Top Line Rides The Pine

from Aaron Portzline of the Columbus Dispatch,

With his club down three goals in the third period Sunday in Nashville, Blue Jackets coach Scott Arniel decided to shorten his bench and play the three lines he’d come to trust the most.

It’s only noteworthy because the Blue Jackets’ No. 1 line - left winger Kristian Huselius, center Antoine Vermette and right winger Rick Nash - wasn’t part of Arniel’s mix.

Arniel benched the line, featuring the team captain and two of the club’s most accomplished veterans, for the final 14:07 of the 4-1 loss, saying their play in the neutral and defensive zones was not good enough to justify continual ice time.

After describing the play of those three as “awful” after the game, Arniel had warmed only slightly yesterday, saying with a smile, “I’ll go back to loving them again (today).”


Filed in: NHL Teams, Columbus Blue Jackets, | KK Hockey | Permalink

How About The Winter Classic In Columbus?

from Derek Zona of SBNation,

If the NHL is dedicated to the expansion markets, as Gary Bettman has said time and time again during interviews, then the league should use the Winter Classic to solidify the Columbus market.  The league would be hard-pressed to find a better venue than Ohio State’s venerable Ohio Stadium, a.k.a. The Horseshoe, a 102,329-seat college football stadium filled with history, lore and beauty.

Columbus would give the league a Western Conference host, yet the city isn’t far from the Eastern media, and it’s within driving distance of a number of NHL markets who would help Columbus fill the enormous Horseshoe. The Blue Jackets could certainly use the revenue, the media attention and the raised profile within hockey.The NHL needs the city and fans to see hockey on the second-biggest stage the league can offer and hopefully drive more hips through the turnstiles.

The league could pit Columbus against the defending Stanley Cup Champion (unless it’s a Canadian team), Detroit or Pittsburgh (both cities are a short drive away from Columbus and would bring plenty of fans), or New York or Philadelphia (if television ratings are the overriding concern).


Filed in: NHL Teams, Columbus Blue Jackets, | KK Hockey | Permalink

TO Review

from Jeff Rimer of BlueJackets.com,

As for our night here in Toronto, last night a group of us that included all the broadcasters, Ryan Holtmann of the PR staff and Julie Gamble who handles all the CBJ’s travel ventured over to the new Real Sports Bar and Grill, which is part of the Maple Leafs empire. ESPN has labled it “North America’s #1 Sports Bar!” and for what it’s worth I would wholeheartedly agree. It’s amazing everywhere you look there are giant TV’s and there must have been five or six games available on all the TV’s. The huge screen which is the center piece of the establishment is a movie theatre sized TV in HD and the picture quality is superb. It had the World Junior Championships game between Team Canada and Team Norway in full view with a pro Canada crowd on hand.

For Columbus hockey fans a trip here to Toronto is a must. In addition to perhaps checking this place out, seeing a hockey game and visiting the Hockey Hall of Fame is a must. It’s a six and a half hour drive from Central Ohio and well worth the trip.

After dinner George Matthews, Bill Davidge, my son - who works in the media here in Toronto - headed over to the NHL’s War Room, which is around the corner from the Real Sports Bar and just 50-feet from the Air Canada Centre.


Filed in: NHL Teams, Columbus Blue Jackets, NHL Talk, | KK Hockey | Permalink

Morning Line

“It’s one of the most embarrassing games, obviously, since I’ve been here, but it’s one of the most embarrassing games since I’ve been a coach.

“That was men against pee-wees out there. (I’m) thoroughly embarrassed. I want to apologize to fans. That was absolutely, utterly, embarrassing.”

-Scott Arniel, coach of the Columbus Blue Jackets after losing to Vancouver last night.  More from Aaron Portzline of the Columbus Dispatch.

Filed in: NHL Teams, Columbus Blue Jackets, Vancouver Canucks, | KK Hockey | Permalink

A Major Problem With The Blue Jackets

from Rob Oiler of the Columbus Dispatch,

The beauty in playing pin the tail on the Blue Jackets’ donkey is that you can’t miss.

Through the past decade, you could stick it to the players and win. Stick it to the front office and win. Stick it to the coaching staff and win. Stick it to the broadcast teams and win. Stick it to the inflatable cannon - Am I the only one who sees a little bit of a mustachioed Hitch in Boomer? Guessing the players see it, too? - and win.

Searching for answers isn’t the problem. They’re everywhere. Sorting through the answers takes more time, but because time and space are finite newspaper commodities, we’ll pin this one on scouting, drafting and signing of talent.

Consider the list of Blue Jackets first-round draft picks:

• 2000, Rostislav Klesla, No. 4 overall: Serviceable

• 2001, Pascal Leclaire, No. 8: Bust, or at least always broken (traded)


Filed in: NHL Teams, Columbus Blue Jackets, | KK Hockey | Permalink

Garon Ready To Play

from Aaron Portzline of the Columbus Dispatch,

The Blue Jackets are treading lightly, wending their way day by day through a tricky situation with goaltenders Steve Mason and Mathieu Garon.

Garon will be the starter when the Blue Jackets play host to the Calgary Flames tonight in Nationwide Arena, and he’s expected to remain in that role for as long as it takes Mason to rediscover his confidence.

But nobody knows how long that might take.

The process of stripping Mason’s game down to the foundation and building it back up again - along with his misplaced confidence - is just under way. The 22-year-old stayed on the ice long after practice yesterday with goaltending coach Dave Rook and others….

“I think I’ve proven that I can play 20-25 games in a row and it doesn’t bother me,” Garon said. “I know in a long stretch that I can do it. I don’t have a problem with it.”

read on

Filed in: NHL Teams, Columbus Blue Jackets, | KK Hockey | Permalink

What To Do With Steve Mason?

from Tom Reed of the Columbus Dispatch,

Drawing on the history of great goaltenders who required taking a step back, Darren Pang believes the Blue Jackets should send Steve Mason to the minors to regain his confidence.

Drawing on nearly 40 years of NHL experience as a goalie and broadcaster, Glenn “Chico” Resch thinks Mason would benefit from a fresh set of eyes analyzing his game.

Drawing on a 1980s movie analogy, Daryl Reaugh says the Jackets need to keep putting Mason in the danger zone until his talents propel him.

“It’s like Maverick in Top Gun, you keep sending him back up until he breaks through.” said Reaugh, an analyst for Versus and the Dallas Stars. “This kid is way too good to be struggling like he is.”

While four former NHL goalies and current television analysts offered different takes on Mason, they all agreed that Mathieu Garon is capable of carrying the Blue Jackets as they try to get their 22-year-old franchise goalie untracked.


Filed in: NHL Teams, Columbus Blue Jackets, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: steve+mason

Video- You Make The Call

Blue Jackets had a go-ahead goal waived off last night against Dallas.

What do you think plus more reaction at PuckDaddy.

Filed in: NHL Teams, Columbus Blue Jackets, Dallas Stars, | KK Hockey | Permalink

Closure Reached On The Death Of Brittanie Cecil

from Mike Wagner of the Columbus Dispatch,

An endless stream of faces passed by Jody Naudascher at her daughter’s funeral, but the one she was privately hoping to see, the hockey player with the long, sandy-blond hair, didn’t walk through the door.

Yesterday, almost nine years after 13-year-old Brittanie Cecil died after being struck by a hockey puck, Naudascher finally met the man who had been carrying around his own anguish for the loss of her little girl.

Espen Knutsen, the former Columbus Blue Jackets player who shot the puck that struck Brittanie, embraced the trembling mother the moment he saw her, and the two began the closure that had escaped them both.

“I don’t hold you responsible; I never did,” Naudascher told Knutsen at Nationwide Arena during a private, one-hour meeting. “It was an accident, and you should never have blamed yourself for anything. I wanted to tell you all this back then.”


Filed in: NHL Teams, Columbus Blue Jackets, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: brittanie+cecil, espen+knutsen

Not What You Need From Your Franchise Goalie

from Aaron Portzline of Puck-Rakers,

In the wake of a 6-3 loss to the Edmonton Oilers in Rexall Place, Arniel must surely hope that this is rock bottom for goaltender Steve Mason, who was pulled for the third time in four games, but not before the loss to the Oilers was out of hand.

“(Mason) is in his own head right now,” Arniel said. “He’s probably his own worst enemy. But we’re going to stick with him and do everything we can to help him. Obviously, he has to be a big part of our hockey club.”

Arniel said he had a conversation with Mason during the first intermission, in which he told Mason that he was putting him back out for the second period, giving him a chance to work his way out of his struggles.

It was a crossroads moment in the game. The Blue Jackets dominated the first period, outshooting the Oilers 23-13 but trailing 3-2, and Arniel noted afterward that “I had more to say than him.”

Mason, who did not speak with reporters post-game, could not get it back together in the second period. By the end of the second, it was 6-2 Oilers and Mason was lunging at pucks, overplaying angles and not looking anymore comfortable.

read on

Filed in: NHL Teams, Columbus Blue Jackets, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: steve+mason

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About Kukla's Korner Hockey

Paul Kukla founded Kukla’s Korner in 2005 and the site has since become the must-read site on the ‘net for all the latest happenings around the NHL.

From breaking news to in-depth stories around the league, KK Hockey is updated with fresh stories all day long and will bring you the latest news as quickly as possible.

Email Paul anytime at pk@kuklaskorner.com


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