WEEKLY REPORT: Blue Jackets Host Blackhawks, Hurricanes and Oilers This Week
This week’s action begins stretch that has Columbus playing five of its next six games at Nationwide Arena
THIS WEEK’S GAME SCHEDULE/BROADCASTS (Times ET)
Tuesday, Mar. 20 vs. CHICAGO BLACKHAWKS, NATIONWIDE ARENA, 7 p.m. – FS Ohio HD/Sports Radio 97.1 The Fan
Friday, Mar. 23 vs. CAROLINA HURRICANES, NATIONWIDE ARENA, 7 p.m. – FS Ohio HD/Sports Radio 97.1 The Fan
Sunday, Mar. 25 vs. EDMONTON OILERS, NATIONWIDE ARENA, 3 p.m. – FS Ohio HD/Sports Radio 97.1 The Fan
BLUE JACKETS AT A GLANCE
Record: 23-42-7, 53 pts. (13-19-3, 29 pts. at home, 10-23-4, 24 pts. on the road)… Standings: 5th/Central Division… 15th/Western Conference… Leading Scorers: RW Rick Nash (24-23-47, 72 GP)… LW Vinny Prospal (12-33-45, 72 GP)… Goaltenders: Curtis Sanford (10-18-4, 2.60 GAA, .911 SV%, 1 SO in 36 GP)… Steve Mason (13-23-3, 3.26 GAA, .896 SV%, 1 SO in 40 GP).
OPPONENTS AT A GLANCE
CHICAGO BLACKHAWKS – Head Coach: Joel Quenneville… Record: 40-25-8, 88 pts… Standings: 4th/Central Division… 6th/Western Conference… The Hawks have gone 7-1-1 in their last nine games and are riding a five-game regulation unbeaten streak (4-0-1)… Leading Scorer: RW Marian Hossa (28-43-71, 72 GP)… Leading Goaltender: Corey Crawford (25-16-5, 2.83 GAA, .902 SV%, 0 SO in 49 GP)… All-Time Series: Jackets are 28-32-8 all-time against Chicago, including 15-14-5 at home… Blue Jackets went 2-3-1 in 2010-2011… This Season: Sixth of six meetings… Chicago won 5-2 on Oct. 29, 4-1 on Dec. 26 and 5-2 on Jan. 10 in games played at United Center, while winning 6-3 on Nov. 10 and 6-1 on Feb. 18 at Nationwide Arena
CAROLINA HURRICANES – Head Coach: Kirk Muller… Record: 29-29-15, 73 pts… Standings: 4th/Southeast Division… 11th/Western Conference… Canes have gone 21-12-11 since Dec. 7 after an 8-17-4 start… Leading Scorer: C Eric Staal (21-43-64, 73 GP)… Leading Goaltender: Cam Ward (26-21-12, 2.78 GAA, .913 SV%, 4 SO in 61 GP)… All-Time Series: Jackets are 6-6-0, including a 3-2-0 mark at home … The Blue Jackets have won the last four meetings since a 2-1 Hurricanes win at RBC Center on Dec. 15, 2005… Columbus won the lone meeting last season, 3-2, at Carolina on Mar. 12… This Season: Lone meeting.
EDMONTON OILERS – Head Coach: Tom Renney… Record: 28-36-8, 64 pts… Standings: 5th/Northwest Division… 14th/Western Conference… The Oilers rank third in the NHL on the power play at 21.1 pct… Leading Scorer: RW Jordan Eberle (32-38-70, 68 GP)… Leading Goaltender: Devan Dubnyk (16-17-2, 2.74 GAA, .912 SV%, 2 SO in 39 GP)… All-Time Series: Jackets are 14-23-6 all-time, including 9-8-4 at home… The home team has won the last eight meetings in the series… Columbus went 2-2-0 in 2010-11… This Season: Fourth of four meetings… Edmonton won 6-3 on Dec. 2 and 3-0 on Mar. 14 at Rexall Place, while Columbus won 4-2 at home on Jan. 17.
Mar. 18 – Assigned LW Dane Byers to the Springfield Falcons (AHL)… Mar. 14 – Assigned G Allen York to Springfield (AHL).
OhioHEALTH INJURY REPORT
D Radek Martinek (post-concussion symptoms, Oct. 22 at Detroit) will miss the rest of the 2011-12 season… D Marc Methot (broken jaw, Feb. 9 vs. Dallas) is out indefinitely… LW Kristian Huselius (lower body, Dec. 6 at Montreal) is week-to-week… D Fedor Tyutin (hand, Mar. 6 vs. Phoenix) is out indefinitely… C Derek MacKenzie (upper body, Mar. 6 vs. Phoenix) is week-to-week… Games Missed to Injury: 338.
LAST WEEK’S RESULTS
Mar. 14 – at Edmonton 3, BLUE JACKETS 0: Devan Dubnyk made 22 saves, including 19 over the final two periods, to lead the Oilers to the win at Rexall Place. Following a scoreless first period, Edmonton took a 1-0 lead on a goal by Ryan Nugent-Hopkins 7:40 into the second period and Taylor Hall pushed the lead to 2-0 with a power play goal at the 19:55 mark. Linus Omark’s empty net goal in the third rounded out the scoring. Curtis Sanford stopped 24-of-26 shots in net for Columbus, which was outshot 27 to 22 in the game and went 0-of-4 on the power play… Mar. 17 – at Vancouver 4, BLUE JACKETS 3: Daniel Sedin scored a pair of goals, including the eventual game-winner at 15:19 of the third period, as the Northwest Division-leading Canucks held on for the win. The Jackets took a 1-0 lead at 7:55 of the first period on a goal by Vinny Prospal, but Vancouver responded with goals by David Booth and Daniel Sedin just 1:19 apart late in the period to take a 2-1 lead after one period. Goals by Vancouver’s Alex Edler and Columbus’ Jack Johnson made it 3-2 after two periods before Sedin’s second pushed the advantage to 4-2 at 15:19 of the third. The Jackets pulled within 4-3 when James Wisniewski scored at the 16:24 mark but Corey Schneider made several saves late and finished with 33 in the game to preserve the win. Steve Mason made 34 saves for Columbus, which surrendered two power play goals on four Vancouver attempts… Mar. 18 – BLUE JACKETS 2, at Calgary 1 (SO): Steve Mason made 28 saves and stopped all four Calgary shootout attempts to earn the win in net after replacing an injured Curtis Sanford 14:30 into the first period. The game was decided by rookie Cam Atkinson, whose first NHL shootout attempt beat Miikka Kiprusoff in the fourth round. Columbus took a 1-0 lead thanks to a Nikita Nikitin goal at 13:03 of the first period and the lead stood thanks to Mason, who stopped all 16 Flames shots in the second period. Calgary finally broke through at 8:34 of the third, tying the game on a goal by Matt Stajan. The Flames outshot the Jackets 31 to 18 in the game, but Columbus killed off all four Calgary power play attempts en route to the win.
The Blue Jackets have gone 10-10-1 in their last 21 games since Feb. 3 and had a season-best four-game winning streak from Mar. 1-8… Columbus has gone 5-4-1 in its last nine road games and won two of its last three at Nationwide Arena… The Blue Jackets have gone 0-of-32 on the power play in their last eight games after converting 14-of-52 (26.9 pct.) over their previous 13 games… The Jackets have successfully killed off 44-of-54 opponent power play attempts (81.5 pct.) over the past 16 games… Columbus is 2-2 in games decided in overtime this season and 4-5 in shootouts, including a 4-2 mark in its last six shootouts.
JACKETS FIT JOHNSON WELL
D Jack Johnson has collected 3-3-6 and 9 PIM with a +3 plus/minus rating in 11 games with Columbus compared to 8-16-24, 24 PIM and -12 in 61 games with Los Angeles this season. In his last nine games, he has collected 3-3-6 with a +7 plus/minus rating while firing off 25 shots, registering 13 hits and 20 blocked shots. He collected his second multi-point game as a Jacket with 1-1-2 and was +3 at Vancouver on Mar. 17 and blocked six shots the following night at Calgary. He has now collected 11-19-30 in 72 games this season. His 11 goals are a career-high and he has hit the 30-point mark for the third-straight season.
MASON DOESN’T MISS A BEAT IN RETURN
G Steve Mason has gone 8-4-1 with a 2.68 goals-against average, .922 save percentage and one shutout in his last 13 games, stopping 380-of-412 shots since Feb. 11. He has registered 30 or more saves in nine of those 13 games and has wins in five of his last six decisions. He returned to action last weekend after suffering a hand laceration vs. Los Angeles on Mar. 8 and missing the next three games. He split two games at Vancouver and Calgary, sporting a 2.75 GAA and .925 SV% (62 saves-67 shots). He also stopped all four Calgary shootout attempts in a 2-1 SO win on Sunday.
NIKITIN CONTINUES TO THRIVE ON BLUE LINE
D Nikita Nikitin collected 1-8-9 in 48 career NHL games over the past two seasons with St. Louis prior to joining the Blue Jackets in November. Since that trade he has registered 5-18-23 in 44 games, while averaging 23:39 TOI per game and scoring a pair of game-winning goals. He has collected 3-6-9 in his last 17 games with his three goals coming in the last nine contests.
LW Vinny Prospal has picked up 3-12-15 in his last 22 games… D James Wisniewski has collected 3-4-7 in his last 16 games and continues to lead the club in ice time at 24:40… C Mark Letestu has collected 3-3-6 in his last seven games… D Brett Lebda has picked up 0-3-3 in his last five games… C Derick Brassard has 3-7-10 in his last 15 games… C Darryl Boyce registered his first point as a Blue Jacket with an assist on Nikita Nikitin’s goal at Calgary on Mar. 18… D Aaron Johnson was credited with eight blocked shots at Vancouver on Mar. 17.
Tuesday, Mar. 20 vs. Chicago – $10,000 TUESDAYS – A total of $10,000 in prizes will be given away to fans in attendance throughout the game… TIM HORTONS JACKETS PACK – Fans receive a game ticket, $10 food/beverage voucher, Blue Jackets hat, CBJ-Tim Hortons travel mug with voucher for a free coffee fill-up at participating Tim Hortons locations and Timbits 10-count snack pack. Prices start at $30 per person, which is a savings of $28.
Friday, Mar. 23 vs. Carolina – TIM HORTONS JACKETS PACK – Fans receive a game ticket, $10 food/beverage voucher, Blue Jackets hat, CBJ-Tim Hortons travel mug with voucher for a free coffee fill-up at participating Tim Hortons locations and Timbits 10-count snack pack. Prices start at $30 per person, which is a savings of $28… LABATT BLUE ZONE HAT TRICK COMBO – Get a Lower Level ticket, a pre-game buffet and a post-game drink in the Labatt Blue Zone Pub for just $55 per person… Team Card Set Giveaway presented by Panini - The first 10,000 fans in attendance with receive a set of Blue Jackets team cards courtesy of Panini.
Sunday, Mar. 25 vs. Edmonton – DISPATCH FAMILY VALUE PACK – Fans receive a game ticket, hot dog, Pepsi, popcorn, UDF ice cream cone coupon and OhioHealth Ice Haus Skate Pass. Packages start at $25 per person, which is a savings of 50%, and lower level packages are available starting at $59 per person… LABATT BLUE ZONE HAT TRICK COMBO – Get a Lower Level ticket, a pre-game buffet and a post-game drink in the Labatt Blue Zone Pub for just $55 per person.
Wednesday, Mar. 28 vs. Detroit – Rally Towel Giveaway presented by Verizon Wireless – All fans in attendance receive a free Blue Jackets rally towel courtesy of Verizon Wireless.
Friday, Mar. 30 vs. Florida – TIM HORTONS JACKETS PACK – Fans receive a game ticket, $10 food/beverage voucher, Blue Jackets hat, CBJ-Tim Hortons travel mug with voucher for a free coffee fill-up at participating Tim Hortons locations and Timbits 10-count snack pack. Prices start at $30 per person, which is a savings of $28… LABATT BLUE ZONE HAT TRICK COMBO – Get a Lower Level ticket, a pre-game buffet and a post-game drink in the Labatt Blue Zone Pub for just $55 per person… Blue Jackets Poster Giveaway presented by Nationwide Insurance – All fans in attendance with receive a commemorative Blue Jackets poster courtesy of Nationwide Insurance… Columbus Chill 20th Anniversary Celebration – Celebrate the 20th anniversary of the inaugural season of the ECHL’s Columbus Chill and recognize Columbus hockey history. Former Chill players will participate in various in-game elements throughout the night with four members of the All-Time Columbus Chill Team dropping the puck prior to the game. More details will be announced soon.
Saturday, Apr. 7 vs. NY Islanders – DISPATCH FAMILY VALUE PACK – Fans receive a game ticket, hot dog, Pepsi, popcorn, UDF ice cream cone coupon and OhioHealth Ice Haus Skate Pass. Packages start at $25 per person, which is a savings of 50%, and lower level packages are available starting at $59 per person… LABATT BLUE ZONE HAT TRICK COMBO – Get a Lower Level ticket, a pre-game buffet and a post-game drink in the Labatt Blue Zone Pub for just $55 per person… Blue Jackets T-Shirt presented by FOX Sports Ohio – All fans in attendance receive a Blue Jackets t-shirt courtesy of FOX Sports Ohio.
WIN A BACKYARD BARBEQUE WITH RYAN JOHANSEN
The Blue Jackets, Giant Eagle and Pepsi are giving fans the chance to win a backyard barbeque with CBJ rookie center Ryan Johansen. The grand prize winner will receive a visit from Johansen, who will bring CBJ mascot Stinger along, set up the Blue Jackets street hockey rink and host a barbeque at the winner’s home. All the food will be provided by Giant Eagle with beverages supplied by Pepsi. In addition, the winner will receive a Johansen prize pack, free Pepsi products for a year and a Giant Eagle gift card. Visit participating Central Ohio Giant Eagle locations or click here to enter.
WIN WITH WHITE CASTLE
Customers who make a purchase at a participating central Ohio White Castle location will receive their receipt with a special web link at the bottom – www.BlueJackets.com/WhiteCastle. Fans who visit the site will receive a White Castle coupon and have the chance to win two tickets to an upcoming Blue Jackets home game.
PAPA JOHN’S MONDAYS
Fans get free toppings on Papa John’s pizza (large cheese for $9.99) every Monday for each goal scored by the Blue Jackets in their most recent game. Fans can double the toppings after a win! Order by phone or at www.papajohns.com (promo code CBJMonday).
PETLAND PRESENTS 2012 PUCKS AND PAWS CALENDAR
The 2012 Pucks and Paws Calendar presented by Petland features Blue Jackets players alongside assistance dogs and puppies in training from Canine Companions for Independence®, the nation’s largest non-profit provider of trained assistance dogs to children, adults and veterans with physical disabilities. Fans can purchase the calendar at the Foundation Kiosk during Blue Jackets home games or at www.BlueJacketsFoundation.org.
THIS WEEK ON JACKETS TV AT BLUEJACKETS.COM
This week’s scheduled Jackets TV programming includes: the Top 5 Plays of the Week (vote for your favorite); On The Road with rookie Ryan Johansen; a look at a special practice conducted by the Blue Jackets coaching staff; Blue Jackets players tending bar to raise money for the Columbus Blue Jackets Foundation; complete practice and game day coverage; and more.
STAY CONNECTED WITH THE JACKETS
Fans can follow the Blue Jackets online, watch game highlights, press conferences and exclusive behind-the-scenes video content on Jackets TV at BlueJackets.com. Fans can also get up-to-the-minute news and stories by following the Blue Jackets on Twitter at www.twitter.com/BlueJacketsNHL. “Like” the club’s official Facebook® page and get the latest club news and promotions, videos, photos, updates and interact with other fans at www.facebook.com/OfficialColumbusBlueJackets. Check out great videos on the club’s YouTube channel as well at www.YouTube.com/BlueJacketsNHL.
BLUE JACKETS MOBILE APP NOW AVAILABLE
The Blue Jackets official mobile app gives fans a new way to follow the team using their smart phones and mobile devices. The app is currently available in the iTunes and Android Market app stores. Fans can download the NHL GameCenter app and select the Blue Jackets as their favorite team to access the team’s schedule/results, game play-by-play, statistics, NHL standings, game photos, player profiles and updated news. iPhone and iPad users can track shots and goals with the 3D Ice Tracker. All users will also be able to watch features from Jackets TV at BlueJackets.com and purchase single game tickets from within the app.
BLUE JACKETS MEDIA GUIDE AVAILABLE AT iTUNES STORE
The Columbus Blue Jackets 2011-12 Interactive Media Guide is available for free at the iTunes Store as fans now can download the media guide to their computer, iPad or iPhone. The guide contains interactive player bios, as well as detailed team historical and statistical information and records.
BLUE JACKETS ON FOX SPORTS OHIO
Blue Jackets hockey returns to FOX Sports Ohio in 2011-12 with 79 live telecasts in high definition. Game night coverage includes the BLUE JACKETS LIVE pre- (begins 30 minutes prior to the start of each game) and post-game shows… BLUE JACKETS SLAP SHOTS has returned to FOX Sports Ohio each week during the 2011-12 season. Check it out Mondays at 6 p.m.
BLUE JACKETS ON THE RADIO
The AlarmForce Blue Jackets Sunday Morning Skate can be heard on the Wheeling Island Hotel & Casino Blue Jackets Radio Network and Sports Radio 97.1 The Fan on Sundays from 10 to 11 a.m. with hosts Bob McElligott and Mark Wyant… The Columbus Blue Jackets Coach’s Show with Todd Richards airs on Sports Radio 97.1 The Fan on Wednesdays from 7 to 8 p.m.
BLUE JACKETS “PRESS BOX” AT BLUEJACKETS.COM
The Blue Jackets have created a “Press Box” microsite on BlueJackets.com with daily updates of the following: press releases, news articles, media clips, game notes, post-game notes, videos posted on Jackets TV, post-game audio, weekly reports, as well as NHL stats and standings and a link to the 2011-12 interactive media guide. The site is located under the “News” module at the top of the BlueJackets.com home page or at the following link – bluejackets.nhl.com/pressbox.
Single Game: Tickets starting at $26 are on sale now at the Nationwide Arena Ticket Office, FOX Sports Ohio Blue Line Team Stores at OhioHealth Chiller Easton, OhioHealth Chiller Dublin, OhioHealth Chiller North and the Mall at Tuttle Crossing, all Ticketmaster Ticket Centers, by phone at (800) 745-3000 or online at www.BlueJackets.com and www.ticketmaster.com… 2013 All-Star Game: The 2013 NHL All-Star Game is coming to Columbus Jan. 26-27, 2013. Fans can guarantee access to seats for both the game and Skills Challenge now by reserving a full or partial season ticket plan for the Blue Jackets’ 2012-13 season… Season & Group Tickets: For information on full and partial season ticket plans starting at $15 per game and group tickets, call (614) 246-PUCK or (800) NHL-COLS or visit www.BlueJackets.com… 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… White Castle Rush CBJ student tickets: Student tickets are available for $15 (AEP Power Level) and $25 (Lower Level) at the box office beginning one hour prior to all home preseason games or online beginning at 12 p.m. on game days at www.BlueJackets.com... Military Appreciation Ticket: All active service personnel receive a free ticket to Blue Jackets home games by showing a valid, current military I.D. at the Nationwide Arena Box Office.