Features

PRE-GAME: vs. Phoenix

What you need to know before you come to tonight's game

Friday, 01.13.2012 / 3:39 PM / Features
By Rob Mixer  - BlueJackets.com

TONIGHT'S LINEUP
Blue Jackets interim head coach Todd Richards said Curtis Sanford is his starting goaltender tonight against the Phoenix Coyotes, marking two straight starts for Sanford. The club announced center Jeff Carter has been placed on injured reserve today, a day after LW Dane Byers was recalled from the Springfield Falcons.

Byers is expected to dress tonight for Columbus and will play on the left side of Derek MacKenzie and Jared Boll. The Coyotes did not skate today at Nationwide Arena, so their lineup is not known at this time. After playing last night in Detroit, Phoenix may opt to start backup goaltender Jason LaBarbera, who has terrific numbers in eight career games vs. the Blue Jackets: 4-3-0, 1.35 GAA and .955 save percentage.

Here is the projected lineup for tonight’s game at Nationwide Arena:

LW C RW
Prospal Brassard Nash
Johansen Vermette Kubalik
Russell Pahlsson Dorsett
Byers MacKenzie Boll
LD RD
Tyutin Nikitin
Methot Johnson
Moore Savard
G
Sanford
Mason
3 KEYS
  1. Welcome home, get to work: It was a long, emotional road trip for the Blue Jackets but they need to be prepared right off the bat tonight. The Coyotes are a terrific road team and are led by a strong veteran group. Translation: they won’t be road-weary tonight. A quick start with energy is required for the Blue Jackets to shake off the travel legs.
  2. Score the first goal: This key is fairly simple and imperative after looking at this stat: since Dave Tippett took over in Phoenix, the Coyotes are 84-9-13 when they score first.
  3. On the same page: The Blue Jackets have had a full practice to learn Richards' philosophies and tweaks, and they will need all hands on deck tonight to beat the Coyotes. They want speed through the middle, pressure on their specialty teams and an aggressive five-man unit on every shift.

QUOTABLES

Kubalik

Tomas Kubalik, on his line with Ryan Johansen and Antoine Vermette: “It’s just simple hockey. I think we’ve got a pretty good line. I played with Vermette last year and he’s a very good player, and I like playing with him.”

Todd Richards on the Coyotes: “I’ve got a lot of respect for the coach. It’s a team that works. They do have stars over there, but they play as a group. I don’t think anyone puts themselves ahead of other guys on the team, and they play for each other.”

AT THE ARENA VS. PHOENIX
Here are some tips for fans attending the game at Nationwide Arena tonight:

• Doors will open tonight at 6:00 p.m. for the 7:00 p.m. puck drop.

• Looking for some extra cash to pay off your holiday bills? Tonight is another opportunity to support the CBJF 50/50 raffle. For only $1, you can purchase a raffle ticket for the chance to win the night’s pot. Tonight’s raffle benefits the Columbus Chill Youth Hockey Association.

• The Blue Jackets take the ice around 6:30 p.m. for pre-game warm-ups. Interested in their pre-game play list? Check out the scoreboard or follow @CBJ_DJ on twitter.

• Get a head start on your Valentine’s Day shopping. During a tv timeout of tonight’s game, the Blue Jackets Foundation Valentine’s Day Teddy Bear Raffle presented by Meyers Jewelers will be introduced - READ MORE.

• Win a trip to see Ryan Johansen at the 2012 NHL All-Star game. Stop by the R Bar in the Arena District after the game for your chance to enter a raffle to win an all-inclusive trip. Proceeds benefit the Blue Jackets Foundation.

SCHEDULE

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 REGULAR SEASON
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
R. Johansen 82 33 30 3 63
J. Wisniewski 75 7 44 0 51
B. Dubinsky 76 16 34 5 50
C. Atkinson 79 21 19 -4 40
A. Anisimov 81 22 17 -2 39
N. Foligno 70 18 21 5 39
R. Umberger 74 18 16 -3 34
M. Letestu 82 12 22 1 34
J. Johnson 82 5 28 -7 33
B. Jenner 72 16 13 6 29
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
S. Bobrovsky 32 20 5 .923 2.38
C. McElhinney 10 11 1 .909 2.70
 
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