A New Day Dawns

Friday, 02.05.2010 / 3:04 PM / Bobby Mac's Blog
By Bob McElligott  - Blue Jackets Broadcaster

February 5

One of the toughest weeks in the history of the Columbus Blue Jackets is coming to an end. General Manager Scott Howson had to make the difficult decision to relieve head coach Ken Hitchcock of his duties on Wednesday. That ended the era of a man who arrived several years ago and gave supreme credibility to Columbus as a hockey market. A Stanley Cup winning coach who came to town with a plan to give the team an identity, had his time cut shorter than he would've liked. That being said, Ken Hitchcock's contributions to this franchise will last a long, long time.

In making the decision to appoint Claude Noel as the Interim Head Coach, Howson put in place a man who's spent the majority of his career in the minor leagues, working with young, up and coming players. He started at the East Coast Hockey League level, worked his way up as an assistant, before becoming a head coach in the American Hockey League and then joined Ken Hitchcock's staff in 2007. He won a Calder Cup with the Milwaukee Admirals (Nashville Predators affiliate) in the spring of 2004 and also led his team to the championship round in 2006. Claude has a great relationship with the players on the current roster and has as good a chance as anyone to get the most out of them the rest of the way.

One game doesn't save the season, but Noel's first game had the team showing a lot of promise. It wasn't a high scoring affair, but the players gave an all-out effort for 60 minutes, something that has been lacking for most of the season. The main message for the team is, "have fun and play hard." You may wonder why a professional player has to be reminded to have fun since they're playing a game. The truth is, there's a ton of pressure to perform every night. This is their livelihood, not just a pick-up game at a local rink. Sometimes they put too much pressure on themselves and when additional pressure is applied, you don't always get the result you're looking for. Claude Noel will stress that his team follow the game plan, but enjoy themselves while doing it. Will it result in enough wins to make the playoffs? Time will tell.

It will be a big challenge, but when you're having fun and winning, it doesn't seem like work anymore.



*Throughout the season, AAA will bring you the Broadcaster's Blogs - "Bobby Mac", "Davidge Dishes" and "Rimer Ramblings." The Columbus Blue Jackets radio and television analysts will try to keep you updated on all the season action through their blogs, especially when the Blue Jackets are on the road.

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HOME
AWAY
PROMOTIONAL

STANDINGS

EASTERN CONFERENCE
  TEAM GP W L OT GF GA PTS
1 p - BOS 82 54 19 9 261 177 117
2 y - PIT 82 51 24 7 249 207 109
3 x - TBL 82 46 27 9 240 215 101
4 x - MTL 82 46 28 8 215 204 100
5 x - NYR 82 45 31 6 218 193 96
6 x - PHI 82 42 30 10 236 235 94
7 x - CBJ 82 43 32 7 231 216 93
8 x - DET 82 39 28 15 222 230 93
9 WSH 82 38 30 14 235 240 90
10 NJD 82 35 29 18 197 208 88
11 OTT 82 37 31 14 236 265 88
12 TOR 82 38 36 8 231 256 84
13 CAR 82 36 35 11 207 230 83
14 NYI 82 34 37 11 225 267 79
15 FLA 82 29 45 8 196 268 66
16 BUF 82 21 51 10 157 248 52

STATS

2013-2014 PLAYOFFS
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
J. Johnson 2 2 1 0 3
M. Calvert 2 2 0 3 2
R. Johansen 2 1 1 -1 2
B. Dubinsky 2 0 2 0 2
D. Savard 2 0 2 1 2
B. Jenner 2 0 2 -1 2
D. MacKenzie 2 1 0 0 1
M. Letestu 2 1 0 1 1
A. Anisimov 2 0 1 -1 1
C. Atkinson 2 0 1 1 1
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
S. Bobrovsky 1 1 0 .905 3.00
 
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