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Blue Jackets Open Eighth Season on the Road this Weekend

Columbus has posted a 2-3-2 record in seven previous season-opening games, including 1-0-1 mark in last two

Monday, 10.06.2008 / 3:12 PM / News
By Blue Jackets Staff  - Writer
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Blue Jackets Open Eighth Season on the Road this Weekend

THIS WEEK'S GAME SCHEDULE

Day, Date Team/Arena - Time(ET) Television/Radio Broadcast Information
Friday, October 10 at Dallas Stars/American Airlines Center - 8:30 p.m. FS Ohio/WBNS-AM 1460 The Fan, CD101.1 FM

Saturday, October 11 at Phoenix Coyotes/Jobing.com Arena - 10 p.m. FS Ohio HD/WBNS-AM 1460 The Fan, CD101.1 FM

OPPONENTS AT A GLANCE

DALLAS STARS: Head Coach Dave Tippett… Posted a 45-30-7 record (97 pts.) in 2007-08, which marked their fifth-straight season of at least 97 points… Defeated Anaheim and San Jose before losing to Detroit in the Western Conference Finals (4-2)… C Mike Modano has scored more points (528-755-1,283 in 1,320 GP) than any U.S.-born player in NHL history… The Stars were led by C Mike Ribeiro (27-56-83, 76 GP) and LW Brenden Morrow (32-42-74, 82 GP) last season… The Blue Jackets are 7-18-3 in the all-time series, including 3-10-1 on the road… Columbus is 5-2-2 in its last nine vs. Dallas after the Stars posted wins in 10-straight from Nov. 17, 2002 through April 11, 2006.

PHOENIX COYOTES: Head Coach Wayne Gretzky… Posted a 38-37-7 record (83 pts.) in 2007-08… RW Shane Doan led the club in scoring with 28-50-78, while rookie C Peter Mueller added 22-32-54… G Ilja Bryzgalov went 26-22-9 with a 2.43 GAA, .921 SV% and three SO in 55 games… C Olli Jokinen, acquired this summer from Florida, has 208-253-461 in 723 career games… The Blue Jackets are 11-12-5 all-time vs. the Coyotes, including 4-6-4 on the road… The Jackets won last year's season series with a 3-1-0 record and are 5-2-1 over the past two years.

PRACTICE SCHEDULE, OCT. 7-13
Tuesday Goggin Ice Center, Oxford - 10 a.m. ET
Wednesday Goggin Ice Center, Oxford - 10 a.m. ET
Thursday Dispatch Ice Haus - 10:30 a.m. ET
Friday American Airlines Center - 11:30 a.m. CT
Saturday Jobing.com Arena - 11:30 a.m. PT
Sunday San Jose - TBA
Monday San Jose - TBA

OhioHealth INJURY REPORT
LW Raffi Torres (shoulder, Sept. 29) will be sidelined approximately six weeks… G Steve Mason (arthroscopic knee surgery, Sept. 23) will be sidelined approximately four to six weeks.

SEASON OPENER NOTES

Columbus has posted a 2-3-2 mark in its previous seven season-openers, scoring 17 goals and allowing 17 in those games… The club is 0-2-0 when opening the season on the road… The Jackets are 1-0-1 in their last two season debuts… All-Time Season Opening Results: Oct. 7, 2000: Chicago 5, at Columbus 3; Oct. 4, 2001: at Columbus 3, St. Louis 3; Oct. 10, 2002: at Columbus 2, Chicago 1; Oct. 9, 2003: at Atlanta 2, Columbus 1; Oct. 5, 2005: at Washington 3, Columbus 2; Oct. 6, 2006: Vancouver 3, at Columbus 2 (OT); Oct. 5, 2007: at Columbus 4, Anaheim 0.

PRESEASON RECAP
The Blue Jackets went 4-4-0 during the preseason, outscoring their opponents 28-25, and won four-of-six after dropping their first two games… Columbus was 3-1-0 at Nationwide Arena with an 18-12 scoring advantage… The club was led offensively by LW Rick Nash (3-5-8 in four games), rookie RW Jakub Voracek (2-6-8, seven games) and LW Kristian Huselius (3-4-7 in four games)… Columbus defensemen combined for 4-25-29 in the club’s eight preseason games led by Rostislav Klesla (1-4-5 in four games), Fedor Tyutin (1-3-4 in three games), Kris Russell (1-3-4 in five games) and Christian Backman (1-2-3 in five games)… G Pascal Leclaire was 2-0-0 with a 2.64 GAA and .881 save percentage in three games.

OPENING NIGHT AT NATIONWIDE ARENA IS FRIDAY, OCTOBER 17
Columbus will play its home-opener at Nationwide Arena on Friday, October 17, against Central Division rival Nashville. Game time between the Blue Jackets and Predators is set for 7 p.m. Special pre-game activities, including a tribute to Blue Jackets Founder John H. McConnell and ceremonial player introductions, will begin at 6:45 p.m. In addition, all fans in attendance will receive a commemorative hat featuring the "JHM" logo that Blue Jackets players will wear on their jerseys throughout the 2008-09 season in honor of Mr. McConnell.

JACKETS NOTES
This season marks the first time in franchise history the Blue Jackets will open a season by playing more than one game on the road… The season-opening three-game road trip includes games at Dallas (Oct. 10), Phoenix (Oct. 11) and San Jose (Oct. 14)… Columbus plays six of its 10 October games on the road… The Jackets posted a 7-3-1 mark in October last season, which was the best month in franchise history… The Blue Jackets, who currently have 28 non-injured players on the roster, must be down to 23 players by Wednesday… The Blue Jackets have as many as nine players who could make their debuts with the club this week: D Christian Backman, D Mike Commodore, RW Derek Dorsett, C Nikita Filatov, LW Kristian Huselius, C Craig MacDonald, D Fedor Tyutin, C R.J. Umberger and RW Jakub Voracek.

2007-08 AT A GLANCE
Columbus posted a 34-36-12 record, including 20-14-7 at home and 14-22-5 on the road… The Jackets boasted a winning record from Oct. 23, 2007 through Mar. 30, 2008… The club scored 190 goals (2.32 per game) and allowed 210 goals (2.56 per game)… Columbus converted 53-of-356 power play chances (14.9 percent) and successfully killed off 315-of-378 opponent power play chances (83.3 percent)… All-Star LW Rick Nash led the club in scoring with 38-31-69 in 80 games… G Pascal Leclaire went 24-17-15 with a 2.25 GAA, .919 SV% and nine shutouts… D Jan Hejda led the club in plus/minus rating at +20 and rookie RW Jared Boll topped the club with 226 penalty minutes… LW Jason Chimera set a franchise record by playing in 243 consecutive games from Oct. 9, 2005 through Apr. 5, 2008. He missed his first game as a Blue Jacket in the season finale on Apr. 6 due to a groin injury.

BLUE JACKETS ON THE RADIO
The Coach's Show with Ken Hitchcock airs on WBNS Sports Radio 1460 The Fan on Wednesdays from 3 to 4 p.m. with the Blue Jackets Head Coach, FOX Sports Ohio's Jeff Rimer and WBNS Radio's Bruce Hooley… Breakfast with the Blue Jackets can be heard on the Blue Jackets Radio Network and AM flagship station Sports Radio 1460 The Fan on Sundays from 10 to 11 a.m. with hosts Mark Wyant and members of the Blue Jackets broadcast team. 

TICKET INFORMATION
Single Game: Tickets are on sale now at the Nationwide Arena Ticket Office, FOX Sports Ohio Blue Line Team Stores at the Chiller Easton, Chiller Dublin, Chiller North and the Mall at Tuttle Crossing, all Ticketmaster Ticket Centers, by phone at (614) 431-3600 or online at www.BlueJackets.com and www.Ticketmaster.com... Season & Group Tickets: For information on season tickets, six-game, 10-game and 20-game plans and group tickets, call (614) 246-PUCK or (800) NHL-COLS… Huntington Green Seats: A minimum of 250 tickets are available for just $10 at the Nationwide Arena Box Office two hours prior to every home game.

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