Preview: Blue Jackets vs. Canucks

Saturday, 10.19.2013 / 10:00 PM / News
By Rob Mixer  - BlueJackets.com



BLUE JACKETS (2-5-0) vs. CANUCKS (5-3-1)
SUNDAY, 6 P.M. | NATIONWIDE ARENA

             PLAY #JACKETS25
BUY TICKETS NOW!





Let's get this one out of the way first: Curtis McElhinney is expected to make his Blue Jackets debut today, and start in goal for Columbus against Vancouver. Blue Jackets coach Todd Richards said earlier this week that he wanted to get McElhinney, who hasn't made an appearance for the Jackets, a start in one of the Jackets' back-to-back games this weekend and it appears Sunday will be the day. 

The Canucks, who block a lot of shots under coach John Tortorella, reportedly came out of their Saturday matinee in Pittsburgh unscatched. Roberto Luongo played pretty well for Vancouver but it's not yet known whether he will make the back-to-back start. If not Luongo, the Canucks will go with young Swedish back-up Eddie Lack against the Blue Jackets. 

The Blue Jackets got Marian Gaborik back in the lineup on Saturday night against the Capitals, but they aren't likely to have the services of Nick Foligno, who remained in Columbus throughout the week tending to a personal matter. Jack Skille was recalled from Springfield on Saturday morning and Sean Collins was re-assigned, giving Richards another option up front if he wants to make a change.




Perhaps the best thing is to get back on home ice if you're the Blue Jackets. 

They have dropped four straight games after a 4-1 loss to the Washington Capitals last night at Verizon Center and did not have much going after falling behind 2-0 in the second period. Rather than make things interesting, Columbus dug itself a deeper hole with back-to-back goals from Brooks Laich and Alex Ovechkin in the third period. The Blue Jackets, already walking a fine line when it comes to scoring goals, gave the NHL's best power play more than enough ammunition and Washington tallied twice on the man advantage.

Columbus faces a Canucks team today that held a third-period lead on Saturday in Pittsburgh, but that lead lasted all of a few seconds. After Zack Kassian re-directed a point shot to give Vancouver a 3-2 lead at CONSOL Energy Center, the Canucks made a mistake in the offensive zone on the very next shift, and they did so with Sidney Crosby's line on the ice. The ensuing 3-on-2 rush led to defenseman Olli Maatta's first career goal, batting in a rebound between the pads of Roberto Luongo to make it a 3-3 game.

The Canucks would drop the game in the shootout, a 4-3 final, and arrived in Columbus on Saturday evening. 

For the Blue Jackets, the question is how do they respond? How can they put this four-game skid in the rear-view mirror and get back on track with a home-heavy schedule on the horizon? It's rather imperative that they reverse the current trend with a home-ice win on Sunday afternoon and get the ball rolling in the other (and more positive) direction.





VS. NEW JERSEY DEVILS
TUESDAY, 7 P.M.
NATIONWIDE ARENA

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 PLAYOFFS
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
J. Johnson 3 3 1 1 4
B. Dubinsky 3 0 4 0 4
M. Calvert 3 2 1 3 3
R. Johansen 3 1 2 0 3
B. Jenner 3 1 2 -1 3
D. Savard 3 0 3 1 3
C. Atkinson 3 1 1 1 2
D. MacKenzie 3 1 0 0 1
M. Letestu 3 1 0 0 1
J. Skille 3 0 1 -1 1
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
S. Bobrovsky 1 2 0 .904 3.32
 
Columbusbluejackets.com is the official Web site of the Columbus Blue Jackets. The Columbus Blue Jackets and columbusbluejackets.com are trademarks of The Columbus Blue Jackets Hockey Club.  NHL and the word mark and image of the Stanley Cup are registered trademarks and the NHL Shield and NHL Conference logos are trademarks of the National Hockey League. All NHL logos and marks and NHL team logos and marks as well as all other proprietary materials depicted herein are the property of the NHL and the respective NHL teams and may not be reproduced without the prior written consent of NHL Enterprises, L.P.  Copyright © 2009 Columbus Blue Jackets Hockey Club and the National Hockey League.  All Rights Reserved. View the Columbus Blue Jackets Privacy Policy AdChoices NHL.com Terms of Service
Please use the feedback form if you have any recommendations or comments.