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Category: Columbus-Blue-Jackets

Will Claude Noel Be The Columbus Coach Next Season?

from Aaron Portzline of the Columbus Dispatch,

Since Noel took over after the firing of Ken Hitchcock on Feb. 3, most of the team’s young players’ performances have spiked, and the club’s 10-9-5 record - while not glamorous - has been a mild improvement.

But the question that general manager Scott Howson must answer is whether Noel is the long-term solution for the long-suffering Blue Jackets, whether his quirky, unconventional approach is more than just an antidote to Hitchcock’s hard-tack style at the end of another lost season.

“Claude has done an impressive job here under difficult circumstances” is the extent of what Howson would say yesterday.

Still, it’s quite possible - perhaps even likely - that Noel’s last game behind the Blue Jackets’ bench will be at 7 tonight, when the Detroit Red Wings visit Nationwide Arena.

read on

Filed in: NHL Teams, Columbus Blue Jackets, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: claude+noel

Pointing At Homer

from Tom Reed of Puck-rakers,

What really steamed the Jackets is they believe Holmstrom interfered with goaltender Steve Mason in the crease. The puck deflected off Holmstrom’s lifted skate blade at 8:05. An enraged Umberger argued the call and was sent to the box.

Umberger would not comment only to say he was protesting the goal, not the penalty on Blunden. Here’s Mike Commodore’s take: “(Holmstrom) has been doing that for 15 years, however long. He’s probably not going to change.”

more on the game…

Watch the goal the Blue Jackets are complaining about…


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

Take That R.J. Umberger

via Tes Leonsis of Ted’s Take,

I think this player should be talking to his ownership and coaching staff about their rebuild plan to compete for a Stanley Cup NOT to our fan base and players about ours.

And then I think this player should stand up and communicate to his team’s fan base about their plan to compete for a Cup and how they will qualify for the playoffs year after year. And then back it up. It is a simple formula: Outline a plan - communicate it - back it up.

As I have noted, the best way to compete for a Cup is to qualify for the playoffs which Columbus has done exactly how many times to date?

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

Evening Line- Part 2

“I don’t think any team in the West would be overmatched by them.  They play the wrong way. They want to be moving all the time. They float around in their zone, looking for breakaways and odd-man rushes.

“A good defensive team is going to beat them (in the playoffs). If you eliminate your turnovers and keep them off the power play, they’re going to get frustrated because they’re in their zone a lot.”

-R.J. Umberger of the Columbus Blue Jackets on the Washington Capitals.  More from Aaron Portzline of Puck-rakers.

Filed in: NHL Teams, Columbus Blue Jackets, Washington Capitals, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: r.j.+umberger

Blue Jackets Fighting To The End

from Aaron Portzline of Puck-rakers,

The day after a horrendous 6-0 loss to Los Angeles on March 8, the Blue Jackets’ veterans - led by captain Rick Nash and R.J. Umberger - made an impassioned plea to the rest of the players.

The Blue Jackets were essentially out of the playoff race, but the challenge was issued in the dressing room to finish the season strong and with a purpose - for the fans, for the city of Columbus, for pride and for one another.

“These are important games,” Nash said. “The fans pay good money, and we should try to show them a good time.

“They want a winning hockey team. They deserve a winning hockey team. We want to finish strong and build off this for next season.”

The Blue Jackets are 7-2-2 since Nash, Umberger and others stepped forward.


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

Columbus Has Been Bad, But Not Bad Enough

from Tom Reed of the Columbus Dispatch,

The Jackets’ spotty drafting record has played an integral role in their lack of success. The club has traded away four of its 10 first-round selections. But only their 57-point second season has earned them a top-three pick, which they traded for the right to select Nash.

Meanwhile, Jackets fans have watched clubs such as Pittsburgh, Washington and Chicago evolve from rock bottom to rock solid by hitting on dynamic high-end picks.

The Penguins, the reigning Stanley Cup champions, drafted Marc-Andre Fleury, Evgeni Malkin, Crosby and Jordan Staal in a remarkable four-year stretch from 2003 to 2006. No pick was lower than No.2 overall, although they traded up to get Fleury.

“When you are picking that high, it does reduce the chance of error,” Jackets general manager Scott Howson said. “We got a real good one with Rick (Nash).


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

Columbus Will Receive Full Revenue Sharing Check

from Aaron Portzline of Puck-rakers at the Columbus Dispatch,

Blue Jackets president Mike Priest confirmed to The Dispatch on Wednesday that the Blue Jackets expect to qualify for a full share of revenue-sharing from the NHL this summer. That check could be worth $10 million, or more.

This marks the second straight season in which the Blue Jackets have met the two thresholds to qualify: an average attendance of 14,000 or more (the Jackets average in excess of 15,000) and a revenue growth rate ahead of the NHL average.

Two years ago, the Blue Jackets were dinged for failing the revenue growth rate standard, and it cost them $2.25 million out of their revenue check.

Priest said the money this year—like previous years—would be put back into the hockey side of the business, in other words player payroll, scouting, etc.


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

Morning Line

“I don’t think anyone anticipated us having the season we’ve had.  It’s really frustrating because everyone has the same goal in this League and it’s to win. When you can’t do it and you’ve been somewhere for a long time, it gets frustrating.”

“I believe in this team, I believe in this franchise and I believe in the ownership and management.  I think we have good young players who will only get better in the upcoming seasons.”

-Rick Nash of the Columbus Blue Jackets,  More from Mike G. Morreale of NHL.com.

Filed in: NHL Teams, Columbus Blue Jackets, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: rick+nash

Healing Continues To This Day

from Mike Wagner of the Columbus Dispatch,

The brown-eyed, blond-haired eighth-grade cheerleader held up the hockey puck when her family walked into the hospital room.

“Papaw, look,” she said to her grandfather, “I got a souvenir.”

Brittanie Cecil lifted the puck, the one that had struck her in the head as she attended her first National Hockey League game.

The puck flew into the stands at Nationwide Arena when Blue Jackets center Espen Knutsen struck a routine slap shot against the Calgary Flames on March 16, 2002. The puck ricocheted off an opposing player’s stick and struck 13-year-old Brittanie.

Two days later, Brittanie was dead. Knutsen was left sobbing in the Blue Jackets’ locker room, his career beginning to unravel from the emotional fallout.


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

Interference Or Not

from Michael Russo of Russo’s Rants,

If the league’s got any desire of actually fixing these type of mistakes by referees and show them when they’ve blatantly erred, I’d hope referee Stephane Auger has an email waiting for him Saturday morning from Director of Officiating Terry Gregson with a video clip.

There is no way any rational league executive can look at the replay of Kris Russell’s tying goal and say that R.J. Umberger didn’t blatantly break Rule 69.1 (interference with a goaltender), which in part reads, “The overriding rationale of this rule is that a goalkeeper should have the ability to move freely within his goal crease without being
hindered by the actions of an attacking player. If an attacking player enters the goal crease and, by his actions, impairs the goalkeeper’s ability to defend his goal, and a goal is scored, the goal will be disallowed.”

Auger blew it, plain and simple. Sometimes this rule is gray because the goalie will stray outside the blue paint. In this case, it is plain as day. Harding’s in the blue. Umberger backs into him BEFORE Russell’s shot gets there and Harding is impeded from making the save.

more and watch a video of the goal although the interference being suggested can only be seen at the end of the video…

Continue Reading »

Filed in: NHL Teams, Columbus Blue Jackets, Minnesota Wild, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: kris+russell

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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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