Kukla's Korner Hockey
by Paul on 09/08/13 at 07:38 AM ET
from Aaron Portzline of the Columbus Dispatch,
On Thursday, when NHL training camps open, the Blue Jackets begin their quest to prove that their 19-5-5 finish last spring was not an aberration but the dawn of an era.
“That’s going to be part of my message to the team throughout camp,” coach Todd Richards said. “We’re either going to be a team that overachieved or a team that is truly on the right track. That’s the thing we have to prove.
“Was it a fluke, or is that really us? Do we really have this thing moving in the right direction? Until you’re a perennial winner, that’s a fair question.”
Richards believes the answer is yes. So does everybody else in Nationwide Arena, it seems. “We have a group that, when we walk into our building or any other building, we should have our heads held high and our chests popped out,” president of hockey operations John Davidson said.
“We know we’re a good hockey club. “We went into last season not knowing where the heck this thing was going to go. Were we going to pick No. 1 overall? Maybe No. 3? Well, we weren’t even close to being on that end of it. We almost made the playoffs.
“And now, with the summers our guys have had — we’ve watched that very closely — we expect to compete.”
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