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POSTED ON Wednesday, 08.01.2012 / 10:00 PM
By Rob Mixer - BlueJackets.com / CBJ Today

Pumped for tonight's "Before the Battle" on FOX Sports Ohio?

Like to tweet, and win awesome CBJ prizes? Well, you've come to the right place. All you have to do is tweet at us (@BlueJacketsNHL) and let us know what you think of the show! We go behind-the-scenes with the Blue Jackets coaches, management and more during the NHL Draft in Pittsburgh and during free agency earlier this month -- it's chock full of never-before-seen footage that Blue Jackets fans are sure to enjoy!

Winners will be selected at random. It could be YOU, just use the hashtag #CBJBTB and send us your feedback on tonight's show!

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POSTED ON Wednesday, 08.01.2012 / 10:25 AM
By Rob Mixer - BlueJackets.com / CBJ Today

Editor's note: This is the latest installment of a weekly column from BlueJackets.com writer Rob Mixer, which will be featured exclusively on the CBJ Today blog. Be sure to follow Rob on Twitter at @RobMixer.

The first person to tell you that Steve Mason has struggled the past three seasons will be Steve Mason himself. He's an honest guy, is never afraid to share his feelings, and to his credit, answers every question directed at him in the dressing room - win or lose.

At the core of these characteristics is a ridiculous competitor; I often think back to his rookie season in 2008-09 when he posted 10 shutouts and was a finalist for the Vezina Trophy. There wasn't a single puck that he didn't at least have a chance to stop. Mason is a crazy athlete, and at a lanky 6-foot-4, a rare physical specimen for a goaltender.

If you watched Mason's interview on JacketsTV with Bob McElligott earlier this week, you may have noticed some changes. Mason has shed about 15 pounds this offseason and is looking as lean as I've ever seen him, and he has firmly stuck to the game plan laid out for him by strength and conditioning coach Kevin Collins. It has resulted in a more trim and fit Mason, and one that knows he's got a lot of work to do before training camp opens in September.

For the first time since entering the league, Mason's hold on the No. 1 job is being threatened before the season begins. 


Read the full story here >>

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POSTED ON Tuesday, 07.31.2012 / 5:26 PM
By Rob Mixer - BlueJackets.com / CBJ Today

It may have looked a bit strange at first, but after a while, Will Weberfit right in.

Well, as best as a 6-foot-4, 230-pound defenseman could look on the ice with a group of young goalies at this week's Blue Jackets Hockey School. Weber, who recently completed a standout hockey career at Miami University (Ohio) in Oxford, spent a few hours at the OhioHealth's Chiller North location in Lewis Center skating with goalies and giving the kids a memory they will not soon forget.

Not only were the kids full of smiles, but so was Weber. Each time the players participate in a hockey school clinic, they seem to be reminded of their younger days skating with players they looked up to and soaking up knowledge passed along to them.


Read the full story here >>

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POSTED ON Tuesday, 07.31.2012 / 2:00 PM
By Rob Mixer - BlueJackets.com / CBJ Today

Are we ready for the third week of Blue Jackets Trivia Tuesday?

First off, thanks to all who submitted entries to last week's question and took part in the contest. We hope you're having as much fun with the weekly trivia as we are in creating the questions. As a general rule -- if you're having any issues with the Formstack system, please let us know right away so we can fix it up.

Here's the question for this week:


Click here for the question AND entry form >>

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POSTED ON Monday, 07.30.2012 / 12:45 PM
By Rob Mixer - BlueJackets.com / CBJ Today



Adrian Aucoin vividly remembers when the Blue Jackets put a serious dent in the playoff hopes of the Phoenix Coyotes.

It was just five months ago when Aucoin, then a veteran blueliner in the desert, took note of the way the Blue Jackets approached the tail end of their season. There were no secrets; Columbus didn't have much to play for during the final 41 games, but the club's leaders brought the team together and set some attainable goals.

Standing in the way were the playoff-hungry Coyotes, who were locked in an intense race for the Pacific Division title with Los Angeles and Dallas. The Blue Jackets gave Phoenix everything it could handle, winning Mar. 3 at Jobing.com Arena and again three days later at Nationwide Arena, the second time chasing Mike Smith from the net just five minutes into the game.

Those games stood out to Aucoin as he weighed a contract offer from the Blue Jackets on July 1. Their record was a bit misleading, Aucoin said, and with a few changes the team could get back on track.


Read the full story here >>

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POSTED ON Friday, 07.27.2012 / 11:05 AM
By Rob Mixer - BlueJackets.com / CBJ Today

Jack Johnson was one of the first acquisitions made last season by the Blue Jackets designed to change the dynamic both on the ice and in the dressing room, but he certainly was not the last.

It has been quite the busy summer for GM Scott Howson and his staff, swinging significant trades since the deadline in February and adding a stable of competitive, two-way forwards while also bolstering the defense, which was already considered the strong arm of the club.

The latest of those moves involved seven total pieces and five players, sending Rick Nash to the New York Rangers in exchange for Brandon Dubinsky, Artem Anisimov, Tim Erixon and a 2013 first-round pick. Johnson said he and his teammates knew what was coming, but their sole focus is the exciting brand of hockey they know they're capable of playing.

"Everyone in the organization wishes the best for Rick, but we're excited about the direction we're going," Johnson told BlueJackets.com. "We all have to move on, and the guys who we've brought in over the summer are great players and great guys.

"It's going to help the depth of our team a lot, and I think one of the goals of the summer was to do that. We've got some big, strong forwards that really make us tougher to play against."


Read the full story here >>

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POSTED ON Thursday, 07.26.2012 / 11:30 AM
By Rob Mixer - BlueJackets.com / CBJ Today

Editor's note: This is the latest installment of a weekly column from BlueJackets.com writer Rob Mixer, which will be featured exclusively on the CBJ Today blog. Be sure to follow Rob on Twitter at @RobMixer.

After a long and seemingly endless period of speculation, a Rick Nash trade was consummated earlier this week. But you already knew that.

For my money, the most important item to emerge from this story has been the clear-cut formation of an identity for the Columbus Blue Jackets. The words have echoed from the mouths of GM Scott Howson, head coach Todd Richards, and the players (both incumbent and newcomers): competitive, hard-working, fast, smart. This is the mold of a Blue Jacket, and the building of that type of team began in earnest at the trading deadline in February when a roster reshaping was in the works.

It's safe to say we're in the middle of that reshaping -- and the changes are drastic -- but they are in the best interest of the Blue Jackets. They desperately needed forwards and an increased presence at center ice, and one of the immediate options to remedy the void was in a Nash deal.


Read the full commentary here >>

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POSTED ON Wednesday, 07.25.2012 / 6:04 PM
By Rob Mixer - BlueJackets.com / CBJ Today

Brandon Dubinsky arrived in Columbus today for the first time as a member of the Blue Jackets, and spent a few minutes talking with the local media. Topics discussed include: bringing energy to the game every night, being a leader on a young team, how he gets such a fantastic comb-over, and familiar faces on his new team.

Here's the full transcript of Dubinsky's media session:

On what the last few days have been like:
"At first it's tough to get moved from a team you're so familiar with, a team you've played for for so long. Now that a couple days have sunk in, I'm excited for the opportunity. We have a good young team here, and I'm excited for myself and the Columbus Blue Jackets with the moves they've made over the last year to try to turn this ship in the right direction, and get to the postseason and beyond."

On hearing his name in trade rumors:
"I think for most of my time in New York, every time there was a trade rumor I was involved. I guess that's good and bad; it's good to be wanted but it's tough to read about every day. Now that it's said and done, it is a bit of a relief that I'm not going to have to deal with those...at least for the next month or so (laughing). Like I said before, I'm excited to be here and to be a Blue Jacket. I've had an opportunity to talk with some of the guys here, and they all love it here in Columbus. The best part about it right now is the youth we have, and the enthusiasm that we have -- not to mention the skill level that I think this team has. It's underrated, and I think we're going to have a good season."


Read the full story here >>

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POSTED ON Wednesday, 07.25.2012 / 3:33 PM
By Rob Mixer - BlueJackets.com / CBJ Today


Alright, are you ready?

This is the second edition of CBJ Trivia Tuesdays -- and we've upgraded our entry system for you. Starting today, you will submit your answers via the Formstack located below. Make sure you fill out ALL required fields before submitting in order to guarantee your eligibility to win!

So...the full question: Of all the teams the Blue Jackets are scheduled to play from October-December 2012, which are they UNDEFEATED against the last three seasons?

You have until the end of the day today to submit your answer! Good luck!

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POSTED ON Tuesday, 07.24.2012 / 11:32 AM
By Rob Mixer - BlueJackets.com / CBJ Today

The age of digital and social media makes it nearly impossible to stay away from rumors, and Brandon Dubinsky knew that smoke could eventually turn into fire.

His name had been tossed about in the New York media as a trade candidate several times in the last few seasons, but it never bothered Dubinsky because his first preference has always been to show up, play hard, and do his job. It has earned him a reputation as a strong, two-way forward that knows one flight path: north-to-south.

But he's willing to make a concession as he moves east-to-west in joining the Blue Jackets. Monday's trade between Columbus and the New York Rangers was the culmination of six months of trade discussions, countless rumors and a never-ending downpour of speculation. The 26-year-old took it all in stride, and he's already locked in on helping the Blue Jackets become a regular guest in the win column.


Read the full story here >>

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