by PuckStopsHere on 10/21/11 at 03:54 PM ET
We are a few games into the season and all the teams in the league have at least one win except for the Columbus Blue Jackets. In six games their best result to date has been a 3-2 shootout loss to the Colorado Avalanche. Their other five games have been losses. Despite their last place record, none of the games have been embarrassments for the Blue Jackets. Their biggest loss has been by two goals.
Though this record is a sign of a poor team, it isn’t a sign of the worst team in the league. Other teams have a worse +/- than the Blue Jackets do.
At this point, Columbus has only two players with multiple goals scored. They are Rick Nash and Vinny Prospal. This is a familiar story in Columbus. They have not had much scoring depth at any point in their history. For the last several years, Rick Nash has not had a sufficient supporting cast. Their defence lacks any strong players. Grant Clitsome, Fedor Tyutin and Radek Martinek have led in playing time and none of them have been mistaken for all stars. Steve Mason has not been too good in goal. He is posting a 3.34 GAA and a .883 saves percentage. He must improve for Columbus to have a solid season. Perhaps injuries have played a part in this slow start. Kristian Huselius and Jeff Carter are both out with injuries and could provide significant offence. James Wisniewski has not played a game yet due to a pre-season suspension. He will probably help the defence.
When the season is complete, I doubt that Columbus makes playoffs. I also doubt that they hold down last place in the league. Though they are not a good team, they are not the worst in the league either. This means that things will get better from their slow start, but they are unlikely to get a lot better. It will likely be another poor season in Columbus.
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