Thursday, December 28, 2006

Typical Jackets

Somebody needs to explain to me how you can be ahead 4to3 and loose 7-4
Detroit owns the Bluejackets.

Wednesday, December 06, 2006

Jackets 2 shut outs

Ok what the heck,are we looking at a new team.The boys are fininshing their checks,interesting still no shot production and yet they win with a shutout,
I must be dreaming.

Thursday, November 30, 2006

Hitchcock work with Rick Nash and Nikolai Zherdev

Can Hitchcock work with Rick Nash and Nikolai Zherdev? The two young Blue Jackets have a lot in common: high draft picks with high-priced, multi-year contracts, marketed as the future of the franchise—and a reluctance to play defense or team-oriented hockey, things Hitchcock insists upon.
“Hitchcock’s primary job…has to be to make this talented tandem into a dynamic duo,” wrote Toronto Star columnist Damien Cox. “More specifically, it’s to make them into impact players every night and two-way players on, well, many nights.”
Nash’s lack of production this year has been perplexing, while Zherdev has been a public whipping boy for poor defensive and selfish offensive play ever since he joined the team. Hitchcock’s last two teams, Philadelphia and Dallas, were veteran squads headed to the playoffs where the coach had little patience for youthful mistakes.
Hitchcock is known for wearing out his welcome quickly. Gallant was considered a player’s coach. His successor has no such reputation. Hitchcock’s teams play consistent, defensive (read: boring) hockey. Players accustomed to Columbus’s laid-back style, lack of pressure and on-ice freedom may eventually balk, especially if the wins don’t come in bunches.We will se I hope he can turn things around.

Tuesday, November 28, 2006

Ken Hitchcock's coaching

Ken Hitchcock's coaching rule:
"We're on the 90-minute rule. Whatever happens to us, 90 minutes later we've moved on. There's no point in having any anger at anybody. We have to get better.
"It's the next day that makes a coach have longevity. The players have to know its okay and you're going to try and help them get better the next day."
We will see if they can look like a real team so far so good.

Sunday, November 19, 2006

Doug MacLean must GO

Doug MacLean would not resign himself to losing one of his most talented players for the unforeseen future so he continued working the phones and eventually caved in and agreed to a deal with Zherdev. There are no take backs on Anson Carter contract, so, the Jackets have two pricey wingers for the next three years and little room to work with underneath the cap because of it.
While recently fired Philadelphia Flyers coach Ken Hitchcock comes to mind as a possible replacement others who should be on the short list include the always enigmatic Mike Keenan, former Bruins coach Mike Sullivan and very successful and much traveled Pat Quinn.
While Gallant may have recently paid the price for the Jackets poor start, Doug MacLean needs to make his next decision a good one otherwise he will be the next to go.I certainly hope so this all started with his poor trades and mismanagement.

Monday, November 13, 2006

Gerard Gallant Columbus Blue Jackets

Gerard Gallant was fired as the head coach of the Columbus Blue Jackets on Monday, less than 24 hours after the team dropped into last place in its division.
No replacement for Gallant was announced. Columbus next plays at home Wednesday night against Nashville.
The 43-year-old Gallant had a record of 56-76-10 in one full season and parts of two others as the head coach of the Blue Jackets. They fell to 5-9-1-0 this season after Sunday night's 1-0 loss at Chicago.
"Unfortunately, we have not gotten off to the start we expected this season and while there are always a multitude of factors involved, we felt a change was needed," general manager Doug MacLean said. Ok lets blame the coach for the players not scoring goals ,MacLean needs to look in the mirror if he wants to fire someone.

Friday, November 03, 2006

Blue Jackets Foote, Fedorov, Modin and Anson Carter

The Blue Jackets went 35-43-4 last season, good for 74 points, the best record in the young franchise's history, and they are expecting to compete for a playoff berth this season with veterans such as Foote, Fedorov, Modin and Anson Carter, along with young talents Rick Nash, David Vyborny, Duvie Westcott and Pascal Leclaire.
Columbus defenseman Adam Foote, right, missed the playoffs for the first time since 1993-94 last season, his first with the Blue Jackets. "We're right there; it's just a matter of when the trigger's going to go off," Foote said.
Adam Foote hadn't played for a team with a losing record since his third season in the NHL.
It previously happened in 1993-94, with the Quebec Nordiques. No way they make it they have only won 1 game in the last 7 as their coach says we play soft.The fourth line is the only line that consistently don't turn out of their checks.

Thursday, October 26, 2006

Dan Fritsche Columbus Blue Jackets

The Columbus Blue Jackets have activated forward Dan Fritsche off Injured Reserve and have assigned forward Alexandre Picard to the Syracuse Crunch, the club's American Hockey League affiliate, team President and General Manager Doug MacLean announced today.
Will this help I don't know they really need some offence.

Monday, October 23, 2006

Manny Malhotra and Alexander Svitov

Manny Malhotra and Alexander Svitov replied for the Blue Jackets, who looked rusty and sluggish after only playing one game in the last 10 days.

Boy that's a understatement

Monday, October 16, 2006

Columbus Blue Jackets veteran defenseman Bryan Berard

Columbus Blue Jackets veteran defenseman Bryan Berard was recently in Los Angeles seeing a back specialist to determine if he required surgery. The club has placed him on injured reserve, and if surgery is necessary Berard could be out for the remainder of the season.
That could force the Jackets into shopping for an offensive blueliner, although they do have promising Ron Hainsey in the lineup and he could see more playing time in the short term to determine if he can fill in for Berard.
A potential bargaining chip could be veteran winger Anson Carter, who's been demoted to third-line duty since Nikolai Zherdev recently returned to action.

Tuesday, October 10, 2006

Blue Jackets signed Nikolai Zherdev

Moments after the Blue Jackets signed Nikolai Zherdev to a threeyear, $7.5 million contract yesterday, president and general manager Doug MacLean stressed that a baby sitter will no longer be part of the deal.
Guess I was wrong he sure played great in his first game back.I hope the Jackets can keep it up they look much better so far this year.Shelly cracks me up you better keep your head up when he is on the ice.

Wednesday, October 04, 2006

Hockey Officials

Most minor hockey people are bracing for a two-month learning curve as kids are curbed of using sticks or free hand to obstruct opponents.
"We don't want games grinding to a halt and we don't want six guys in the penalty box," said HHC president Peter Martin. Unfortunately, the recertification process of on-ice officials is happening during and after the start of the hockey season. That, said veteran coach and Alliance Hockey coaching mentor Gary McFarlane, could confuse matters as teams experience different officiating standards.
The strict interpretation of the rules was commanded by the sport's governing body, Hockey Canada, but Martin said the phase-in period his organization sought was rejected.
While there is disagreement on how much disruption the new zero-tolerance approach will create, everyone agrees the game will be better for it. "The real plus is that the kids have seen the changes in the NHL and we know the game will be better and (we know) how kids will copy the pros," said McFarlane. "A big part of making it work is going to be patience and a buy-in by parents early in the process."

Friday, September 29, 2006

Nikolai Zherdev no fulltime baby sitter

Moments after the Blue Jackets signed Nikolai Zherdev to a threeyear, $7.5 million contract yesterday, president and general manager Doug MacLean stressed that a baby sitter will no longer be part of the deal.
"We’re not going to have a fulltime baby sitter for him," MacLean said. "There’s a difference between getting him help and getting him a baby sitter. We’re willing to help the kid, of course.
7.5 million! This is kind of funny: "We're not going to have a
fulltime baby sitter for him".I had no idea they hired a person to
take care of everything for him last year.Guess he will have to change his own diapers.

Sunday, September 24, 2006

Sergei Fedorov

Sergei Fedorov will be out four to six weeks after injuring his left shoulder in an exhibition game, officials of the National Hockey League team said Wednesday.
The 16-year NHL veteran, who spent most of his career with the Detroit Red Wings, was injured in the second period of Columbus' 4-1 victory over Buffalo on Tuesday night.
Fedorov was skating toward the right side of the net when Sabres rookie forward Jiri Novotny came from behind and kicked out Fedorov's left leg. Fedorov was upended and slid into the boards.
Blue Jackets coach Gerard Gallant said after the game that it was a clean play. Columbus general manager and president Doug MacLean said he hoped Fedorov would be back early in the season. The Blue Jackets open the season Oct. 6 at home against the Vancouver Canucks.
``Sergei has worked extremely hard to get ready for the season so we're obviously disappointed for him,'' MacLean said.Hopefully this will not be the start of a bunch of injuries like last season.

Sunday, September 17, 2006

American Hockey League

Fritsche agreed to a two-way deal in the first year that will pay him $475,000 if he sticks in the NHL, or $60,000 if he's assigned to the American Hockey League. In the second year of the deal Fritsche will make $750,000 on a one way contract that ensures he will stay in the NHL.
Fritsche tallied six goals and seven assists in 59 games with the Blue Jackets last season.In 78 career NHL games he has totals of seven goals and seven assists.
The 22-year-old forward was drafted in the second round (46th overall) by Columbus in the 2003 NHL Entry Draft.
the signing of Anson Carter and now Fritsche will not impede the Blue Jackets ongoing negotiation with Nikolai Zherdev who is threatening to play this season in Russia if his terms aren't met.Who cares leave him in Russia.

Sunday, August 27, 2006

Nikolai Zherdev

Loyalty first?Doug MacLean spent more than $600,000 and went to the State Department to get Nikolai Zherdev out of Russia and to North America to play for the Blue Jackets in 2003. Three years later, the young player's contract is up, and he's back in Russia playing while agent Rolland Hedges threatens to keep his player there unless their money demands are met here. Blackmail? Usually, it's the Russians doing that to the NHL. Doesn't Zherdev owe MacLean at this point? At what price comes loyalty these days?

Tuesday, August 22, 2006

Nikolai Zherdev Blue Jackets

Nikolai Zherdev is threatening instead to play in his mother country this season unless the Columbus Blue Jackets step up contract talks with the 21-year-old restricted free agent.
"The Russian threat doesn't faze me in the least," Blue Jackets general manager Doug MacLean said yesterday from his Columbus office.
Zherdev has signed a deal with Russian club Khimik Voskresenk and has played with the team for the past few weeks.
Zherdev was second in goals (27) and points (54) with the Jackets last season, his second in the NHL. Now he wants a raise on the $942,400 (all figures U.S.) salary he earned last season. The Jackets are believed to have offered a little more than $1.1-million for a one-year deal or in excess of $3.5-million over two years, not close to what the Zherdev camp wants.
"If we keep talking the way we're talking, there is no breakthrough here," said Hedges, who originally wanted a long-term deal but will settle for a one-year deal that pays enough. What baffles MacLean is that Zherdev, with the help of the Jackets, fought hard to get out of Russia two years ago, battling litigation from his old club CSKA Moscow to bolt to the Jackets.
"I guess I'm a little taken aback that it cost us in excess of $600,000 to get him out of Russia," MacLean said.
"Now he's saying he wants to go back? That catches me a little off-guard."
Here are my thoughts on this I am sure Doug would disagree with me.
In my opinion he can stay there and we can get somebody with size and speed.

Thursday, July 13, 2006

Blue Jackets Ron Hainsey

Blue Jackets re-signed Ron Hainsey to a two-year/$1.475 million contract.
"We are very pleased to have Ron back with us," said Blue Jackets general manager Doug MacLean. "Last season he came in after he was claimed off waivers and played well the last 50 games of the season. We are pleased with his progress and think that he can develop into a strong player in the National Hockey League." Hainsey picked up two goals and 17 points while playing in 55 games last year, but although he does have some offensive upside, he is likely not a fantasy worthy selection in most formats,lets hope this pans out for the Jackets hockey team.

Tuesday, June 27, 2006

Derick Brassard Blue Jackets

Columbus Blue Jackets have been stockpiling young scorers. Today, they drafted another guy to get the puck to them.
The Blue Jackets used their number six pick in the first round of the draft to take Derick Brassard. Brassard is a six-foot-one, 172-pound center who climbed the scouting charts in the last year.
Blue Jackets officials called Brassard a point-producer with lightning speed. The 18-year-old had 72 assists in 58 games last season for the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League team in Drummondville, but team officials say he still needs to complement his skills with a strength and conditioning program.Hopefully he will bring some much need scoring to the club.

Thursday, June 15, 2006

Jody Shelley Columbus Blue Jackets

The Columbus Blue Jackets have re-signed forward Jody Shelley to a two-year contract, club President and General Manager Doug MacLean announced Thursday.
Jody is a fierce competitor who has worked tirelessly to improve his game each year he's been with our club," said MacLean. "He possesses tremendous character and has not only become a real leader in our dressing room, but a great ambassador in our community as well."
I love playing in Columbus and I'm proud to be part of one of the best organizations in the NHL," said Shelley. "I feel really good about our team and I'm looking forward to helping the Blue Jackets take the next step and bring playoff hockey to our fans." Glad to see that Shelley is back.Thats about the only good news I have seen from the Bluejackets,the GM is the one who needs to be replaced for all the lousy trades and deals he has made.

Thursday, June 01, 2006

Peter Mueller signes with Bluejackets

Peter Mueller is about to become the first-ever NHL draft pick to come out of the Everett Silvertips organization, and looks to be a lock for the top 10 at the NHL Entry Draft in Vancouver June 24.
The 6-foot-2, 205-pound center and Bloomington, Minn. native was originally slated to join Don Lucia’s highly successful University of Minnesota program, for whom he would have skated alongside other high-profile ‘06 draft candidates such as Erik Johnson, Phil Kessel and Kyle Okposo this coming fall and possibly beyond. However, Mueller had a change of heart, and instead opted for the Silvertips, who drafted him with a third-round selection in the 2003 WHL Bantam Draft

Saturday, May 06, 2006

David Vyborny signs 2 year deal

David Vyborny will get a chance to add to his multiple Columbus Blue Jackets franchise records.
"David Vyborny has been an important part of the Blue Jackets organization during our five seasons and I am extremely pleased that he will continue to play a vital role on our team," said Columbus general manager Doug MacLean.
"David can play in any situation and has tremendous skill and knowledge of the game. I think he is one of the most underrated players in the National Hockey League and we are fortunate to have him."
Vyborny set career highs with 43 assists and 65 points last season.
"I've really enjoyed playing in Columbus for the Blue Jackets and there was nowhere else that I wanted to play, so I am very happy," said Vyborny.
"We have a good, young team and I am looking forward to helping the team win more games for our fans."
The Blue Jackets have never qualified for the playoffs during their five seasons in the league.

Saturday, April 29, 2006

Syracuse Crunch farm team of Columbus Blue Jackets

The game with all the fights would have been great to watch.Syracuse coach said the Crunch players are still making some foolish mistakes.
"Sometimes it's just youthful exuberance," he said. "I thought we played reasonably well but we didn't generate much offence.
"We've been an offensive type team this year and obviously some of our scorers aren't getting it done."
After combining for 306 penalty minutes in Game 4, the two teams stuck to hockey Friday night. Syracuse had the only two penalties of the first period, but both infractions figured in the scoring.
With Steve Goertzen off for holding, Darby beat an out-of-position Leclaire at 3:40. On the second penalty, Platt pounced on a loose puck near centre ice, broke into the clear and went right in on goal beating Manitoba goalie Wade Flaherty for the short-handed goal.
Despite being outshot 14-6 in the second, the Crunch took its first lead of the game on Lindstrom's power-play goal at 10:09.
Manitoba tied it at 13:51 of the third after Jason King slipped a backhand shot past Leclaire.
Leclaire, the Columbus Blue Jackets' first pick (eighth overall) in the 2001 NHL draft, stopped 32 shots. Flaherty made 16 saves.
Syracuse defence Jeff McMillan didn't play. He served a one-game suspension for removing the helmet of Manitoba's Prestin Ryan during a fight in Game 4 and using it to hit the Moose player

Thursday, April 20, 2006

Team Canada Marc Denis of the Columbus Blue Jackets

Team Canada is taking shape for the 2006 World Championship in Latvia.
Coach Marc Habscheid's team has already confirmed participation of two goaltenders and five skaters, with more confirmations expected imminently.
The players who have accepted invitations to play on Team Canada, which opens the World Championship tournament in Riga on May 5, are as follows:
Goaltenders Alex Auld of the Vancouver Canucks and Marc Denis of the Columbus Blue Jackets; Forwards Patrice Bergeron and Brad Boyes of the Boston Bruins, Sidney Crosby of the Pittsburgh Penguins, Kyle Calder of the Chicago Blackhawks and Mike Comrie of the Phoenix Coyotes.
While no defencemen have "confirmed" status, Boston's Brad Stuart and Minnesota's Nick Schultz are in the process of finalizing commitments and are expected to be on the team.
Columbus forward Rick Nash and Florida defenceman Jay Bouwmeester have been invited to play and have indicated they are interested, but both are seeing their respective team doctors to assess some injury situations and decide whether it's in their best interests to play at the World Championship.

American Hockey League

Hartigan put through waivers
Center Mark Hartigan, who had eight goals and 11 points in the last 11 games of the season, must go through waivers before he can be returned to Syracuse of the American Hockey League. . The Blue Jackets will know at noon today whether he was claimed. The team is hoping he clears so he can aid in the Crunch playoff effort and compete for a place on the Jackets’ roster this fall. . . . The Blue Jackets reassigned forwards Dan Fritsche and Alexandre Picard, defensemen Andy Delmore, Aaron Johnson and Jamie Pushor and goaltender Pascal Leclaire to Syracuse. . . . The NHL will have its draft lottery at the league office in New York at noon today. The Blue Jackets have a 6.2 percent chance to win the lottery, and if they do, they will move from No. 6 to No. 2 overall in the draft order. The St. Louis Blues have the best chance of winning the lottery (25 percent), followed by Pittsburgh (18.8), Chicago (14.2), Washington (10.7) and Boston (8.1). Whichever of these teams wins the lottery will have the No. 1 pick. The draft will take place June 24.

Tuesday, April 18, 2006

Sergei Fedorov Columbus Blue Jackets

Sergei Fedorov. The big trade didn't quite turn around the Columbus Blue Jackets, just as he failed to ignite the Ducks. Former employers Detroit and Anaheim are now playoff bound.He had his moments and playing injured was tough.He took some big hits and bounced right back.

Tuesday, April 11, 2006

Doug MacLean says coach Gerard Gallant

Columbus Blue Jackets: President and GM Doug MacLean says coach Gerard Gallant and his assistants will be getting new contracts soon.
"He's going to get a contract, and so are the rest of the coaches," said MacLean, whose declaration should put an end to speculation that ownership was leaning on him to hire a new coaching staff after the season.
"I've got to meet with the owners and work it out, and I won't do that until after the season. But there's no issue about it."

Wednesday, April 05, 2006

Columbus Bluejackets Hockey

Go Jackets Go Things couldn't have gotten much worse for the Columbus Blue Jackets as they broke for the Christmas holiday.
Stuck in a six-game losing skid, they had a record of 9-25-1, had scored a league-worst 72 goals and were on pace to become the weakest offensive team in NHL history.
"There were a lot of nights I went home and I said to myself, 'Where did I go wrong here?'" general manager Doug MacLean said Wednesday.
Whether it was a holiday miracle or a team finally hitting its stride, over the 50 games since Christmas the Blue Jackets have played the best hockey of their five years of existence (23-15-2).
Heading into back-to-back games with the Detroit Red Wings on Friday and Saturday, they have won a franchise-best six games in a row.
"At Christmas time we talked and said we just wanted to get respectability for the franchise," forward Trevor Letowski said. "We wanted to be a team that's thought of with respect, one that's tough to come in and play against. That's what we're starting to establish."
"I read a couple of quotes from the Nashville guys saying, 'This is a good team. They're playing hard. They're playing as a unit. They're playing within their system,'" forward Trevor Letowski said. "Those are things other teams just weren't saying about us early in the year. That means a lot for the franchise."
Foote, a mainstay on Colorado's two Stanley Cup champions, has been a rock on the blue line. Fedorov's numbers (8 goals, 28 assists) don't reflect his contributions. He's steadied the top line while helping to develop fellow Russian Zherdev, who has blossomed into one of the games best young players.
The streak is nothing more than a milepost, said Denis, who points out that great teams don't pat themselves on the back for winning a few in a row.
"It's a lot more fun coming to practice," Denis said. "But at the same time, this is what we're going to have to do on a more consistent basis next year to get to where we want to be."
Coach Gerard Gallant, whose job was in jeopardy early in the season, said the Blue Jackets have turned a corner.
"You look around the room and the guys are confident," he said. "They've always known they had a good team. It was just that early in the season with all the injuries things didn't go well and we got behind the eight ball.

Saturday, April 01, 2006

Michael Rupp 26-year-old Columbus Blue Jackets'

Michael Rupp, who scored the Stanley Cup-winning goal for the New Jersey Devils in 2003, underwent surgery in his native Cleveland on Tuesday to correct a heart defect.
The 26-year-old Columbus Blue Jackets' forward suffers from Wolff-Parkinson-White Syndrome, an abnormality of the heart's electrical system, basically a racing heart, caused by an extra pathway between his upper and lower heart chambers.
He was born with it, but not diagnosed until after he was drafted 76th overall by New Jersey in 2000.
Rupp was put on the long-term injury list a few weeks ago when a fluttering heartbeat persisted overnight. Doctors told the 6-foot-5, 225-pounder he was a one-in-a-million risk to drop dead without warning.
Rupp was awake the first 90 minutes of the operation.
"The pain wasn't overbearing, but the discomfort was consistent," he said.
"It can drive you crazy because you're strapped on what's essentially a tile floor, and it seems like forever. It felt like my heels and my butt were flattening out."

Wednesday, March 29, 2006

National Hockey League Columbus didn't make the playoffs

Columbus didn't make the playoffs in its first four National Hockey League seasons, and No. 5 likely won't be any different. But the Blue Jackets captured their franchise-best 29th win and are looking ahead to building on that.
"We're playing for something," said forward Rick Nash, who scored two goals. "We're trying to build a lot of momentum right now and gain some chemistry for the start of next season."
The Sharks had plenty going recently as they continue to work their way up the Western Conference standings and erase their slow start that still has them on the outside of the playoff race.
San Jose wrapped up a five-game road trip but needed to win at Columbus to move into a tie with Vancouver for eighth place - the postseason cutoff. Instead, the Sharks are two points behind with 11 to go.
"We're playing desperate teams every night this time of year," said Columbus goaltender Marc Denis, who had 28 saves. "It is a measuring stick. We're working on putting down the blueprint for next season. To get to where we want to be, this is how we have to play. I think we're starting to understand that now."

Sunday, March 26, 2006

Columbus Bluejackets

Got to give the Jackets credit they pulled it out last night against the Redwings.The game against the Flames was the best I have seen this year.Bluejackets finally showed some spunk and got off their butts and did some hitting.The officials finally let them play instead of the old don't touch me type of game that's been in the NHL this year.

Wednesday, March 22, 2006

Blue Jackets officials June 23 event at Nationwide Arena

Wow this is so cool way to go Bluejackets.Columbus' image as a professional sports town should also get a boost from coverage given the draft by national media, she said.
The NHL ended weeks of speculation late Tuesday when it disclosed the Columbus Blue Jackets will host the 2007 draft.
Blue Jackets officials expect more than 10,000 fans and 500 media members to attend the June 23 event at Nationwide Arena. They will watch as NHL general managers and coaches select the world's top young hockey players for their teams.
"To have the draft here," said Blue Jackets President and GM Doug MacLean, "is a testament to the tremendous support of our fans who have proven without a shadow of a doubt that Columbus is becoming one of the premier hockey cities in the world."
It will be the first time the Blue Jackets have hosted the draft. The expansion team played its first NHL season in 2000.
The 2006 draft will be held at General Motors Place in Vancouver. Last year's draft was conducted in Ottawa.

Tuesday, March 14, 2006

Columbus Blue Jackets defenseman Bryan Berard

Columbus Blue Jackets defenseman Bryan Berard will miss the rest of the season because of a back injury that has sidelined him since Jan. 27.
Doctors hope to decide this week if surgery is needed, team president and general manager Doug MacLean said Tuesday.
Berard has described his problem as a bulging disk in his lower back. He had hoped to correct it through rehabilitation.
Berard, who has 12 goals and 32 points in 44 games, signed a two-year contract with Columbus in August after playing nine seasons for Toronto, the New York Rangers, Boston, Chicago and the New York Islanders.
He was the 1997 NHL rookie of the year with the Islanders and won the Masterton Trophy in 2004 for best exemplifying the qualities of hockey.
Berard was severely injured in 2000 when he was hit in the right eye with a stick. He missed the rest of that season and the following one and still has reduced vision in the eye.

Sunday, March 12, 2006

The Columbus Blue Jackets

Dallas earned its NHL-best ninth win when trailing after 40 minutes as Mike Modano scored two third-period goals to give the Stars a 2-1 victory at Vancouver on Saturday night.
New Jersey's Martin Brodeur had won six in a row in Pittsburgh since Nov. 27, 2001, only to be pulled in the second period Saturday after allowing six goals on 16 shots in a 6-3 loss to the Penguins. It was Brodeur's 26th consecutive start.
Mathieu Garon made 31 saves and stopped all three attempts in the shootout to lift Los Angeles to a 2-1 win over St. Louis on Saturday night. Garon earned his sixth win in seven decisions and 27th of the season - the most for a Kings goalie since Felix Potvin posted 31 in the 2001-02 season.
Steve Yzerman turned back the clock Saturday for his first two-goal game since Feb. 11, 2004 as Detroit defeated Chicago 6-4. The 40-year-old Red Wings captain is in his 23rd NHL season.
Rob Niedermayer scored his first two goals since Dec. 18 and Teemu Selanne added his team-leading 28th goal as Anaheim pulled within two points of Edmonton for the final playoff spot in the West with a 5-3 win over Phoenix on Saturday.
"Today is a very sad day across the hockey world and here in Atlanta. Boom Boom was an incredible man who meant a great deal to me, and I'm fortunate to have called him a friend and a mentor.'' - Thrashers coach Bob Hartley following the death of Montreal Canadiens great Bernie "Boom Boom'' Geoffrion on Saturday.
Bernie "Boom Boom'' Geoffrion, the hockey Hall of Famer credited with inventing the slap shot, died Saturday before his No. 5 jersey was retired by the Montreal Canadians in a pre-game ceremony. Geoffrion, who helped lead Montreal to six Stanley Cups in the 1950s and early '60s, died after a brief battle with stomach cancer. He was 75. The Canadians went on to beat the New York Rangers, 1-0.
Mike Grier's goal with 4.6 seconds remaining in regulation lifted Buffalo to a 6-5 victory over Philadelphia on Saturday - the Sabres' fifth straight win and 12th in 15 games. Buffalo, which also had a 15-1-1 stretch earlier in the season, has climbed within two points of Northeast Division-leading Ottawa.
San Jose enforcer Scott Parker and Phoenix's Brendan Witt attempted to scale the barrier dividing the benches during the second period of the Sharks' 3-2 overtime win over the Coyotes on Saturday. Neither Parker nor Witt, making his Nashville debut after a trade with Washington, managed to land any big punches. Both were ejected.
The Columbus Blue Jackets, who have only 26 wins, improved to 12-0-2 in overtime - the best record in the NHL - with a 4-3 win over Edmonton on Saturday.

Thursday, March 09, 2006

Blue Jackets traded defenseman Luke Richardson

The Blue Jackets traded defenseman Luke Richardson to the Toronto Maple Leafs for a conditional draft pick.
Another stupid trade by Maclain

Wednesday, March 08, 2006

David Vyborny Columbus Blue Jackets

If the Columbus Blue Jackets want to get back on track, they will need to rely on players other than Nikolai Zherdev to score.
The Blue Jackets will try to avoid their fifth straight loss for the first time in over two months when they visit the Anaheim Mighty Ducks.
Zherdev, who leads the team with 21 goals, has been Columbus` only source of offense for almost three games. On Feb. 11th, Zherdev scored for the Jackets early in the first period of a 5-2 loss to Nashville.
After the Blue Jackets were shut out 1-0 by Colorado on Thursday, Zherdev scored twice in the first five minutes of the third period in Columbus` 3-2 loss Saturday to Los Angeles.
"It`s a compliment for us to come back like that in someone else`s arena, but it would have been nice to win the game," Nash said. "They`re a good team. They have good defensemen, good forwards and good goaltending. But we played a good game and we were right there with them."
Nash has just one goal in five games while David Vyborny has a goal in eight games.

Friday, March 03, 2006

fans of local team Columbus Blue Jackets

Ohio-based Huntington Banchares has added an online interactive ice hockey game to its Web site aimed at fans of local team Columbus Blue Jackets.
The game was designed to accompany the bank's new Blue Jackets Banking package which includes a branded mouse mat, checks book and cheese card as well as free online banking and bill payment services for customers who sign up.
Huntington says the ice hockey game has attracted more than 4000 game plays since it was launched on 1 February.
Jim Kunk, president of Huntington's central Ohio region, says: "We wanted to offer all of the convenience of our checking services along with a fun way to demonstrate fan loyalty to the Blue Jackets."
The premise of the online game is for the player to skate up ice with the puck, dodging and/or checking the opposing electronic players. As the game progresses, the play increases in difficulty and speed. There is no set ending to the game, just increased difficulty.

Thursday, March 02, 2006

Colorado Avalanche face one of their favorite opponents Columbus Blue Jackets

Looking to keep pace in the tightly packed Northwest Division, the Colorado Avalanche face one of their favorite opponents.
The Avalanche look to post their 18th victory in 20 meetings against the Columbus Blue Jackets when the teams meet Thursday for the final time this season.
Since Columbus joined the NHL in 2000, Colorado is 17-0-1 with one tie in the all-time series, outscoring the Blue Jackets, 81-26. The only win by Columbus came in overtime on February 28, 2004.
Rookie sensation Marek Svatos scored twice in the third period for the Avalanche in a 4-1 win over the Blue Jackets on February 10, giving Colorado its third victory in as many meetings this season.
Colorado won its first game since the Olympic break Tuesday, a 4-2 triumph over the Minnesota Wild. The victory moved the Avalanche within one point of Vancouver and Calgary for the top spot in the division race
Joe Sakic has one goal and seven assists in his last five games and needs two assists to become the 16th player in league history to reach 900.
Returning to the ice for the first time since the Torino Games, the Blue Jackets play the second contest of a four-game road trip and will look for their second win in five games.
David Vyborny was one of four Columbus players to participate in the Olympic tournament and helped the Czech Republic win a bronze medal. The other three were Rick Nash and Adam Foote for Canada and Radoslav Suchy for Slovakia

Tuesday, February 28, 2006

Cam Severson from the Calgary Flames for defenseman Cale Hulse.

The Columbus Blue Jackets got a little bit tougher Tuesday, acquiring center Cam Severson from the Calgary Flames for defenseman Cale Hulse.
The 28-year-old Severson has 101 points and 889 penalty minutes in 319 career American Hockey League games, including 13 goals, seven assists and 146 penalty minutes in 54 games for the Omaha Ak-Sar Ben Knights this season.
Severson has three goals and 58 penalty minutes in 33 career NHL games. He last played in the league with the Mighty Ducks of Anaheim in the 2003-04 season.
"Cam is a big, physical forward who plays with a lot of grit and will add some size and toughness to our group of forwards," Blue Jackets president and general manager Doug MacLean said.

Monday, February 27, 2006

Fighting in hockey

From this fan's perspective, fighting is part of what makes a hockey game such a thrilling event to watch. More importantly, any hockey veteran will tell you that fighting is central to the sport.
Dartmouth standouts Tanner Glass '07 and Grant Lewis '07 explain that fighting is ultimately about accountability on the ice. "It allows the players to police the game themselves," Glass said. "A chippy player skating around throwing sticks and elbows will get the crap beat out of him, so it creates consequences for stupid play."
I've heard plenty of people in the stands complain about hockey games getting "ruined" by fights, but Glass and Lewis help put its necessity in perspective. Hockey is a vigilante sport where the players keep each other accountable for every move on the ice. Unlike football or basketball where that burden lies on the referee, the players are ultimately responsible for maintaining the balance.
Considering our safety-conscious culture, I imagine plenty would disagree with the fact that hockey needs fighting. Personally, I love the idea that hockey exists as a renegade sport, resisting the forces that would like to see players clean up their image and place more importance on a good haircut than missing teeth.

Friday, February 24, 2006

Marc Denis trade or not

The Capitals’ Olaf Kolzig and the Blue Jackets’ Marc Denis are both likely staying put, and Jose Theodore’s broken heel has effectively taken him off the Canadiens’ trade block as well. St. Louis’ Patrick Lalime could be had for cheap if any team was interested, the Thrashers have a bunch of second- and third-tier goalies knocking around in the minor leagues, and Chicago wouldn’t likely hold up any deal for expensive and injured Nikolai Khabibulin.

Wednesday, February 22, 2006

Platt and other quick juniors

While some despaired over the doom and gloom of last season NHL lockout, Platt, albeit in hindsight, could have not have benefited better thanks to all the rule changes that came along with the league return. Before the new rules this season Platt was not a desirable player. He was too small, light, not very physical and wasn't playing for a winning team. But now, those that passed on Platt find that the speedy Crunch center with the quick shot is just what they were searching for and Platt finds himself in the right place, at the right time. The game changed, said Agnew. debunkingsemen can't get a stick on these speedy guys and slow them down. Thats why Platt and other quick juniors have found a home this year and are in such a high demand to fill out teams rosters. As a player and a person I felt I was ready to take that step to the professional ranks, Platt said. I really turned down money to play professional this year with the school package that was offered. I needed to take the step because I felt I wouldn't develop and progress as a player any further in juniors. I don't regret one decision I have made this year.

Tuesday, February 21, 2006

Columbus Blue Jackets

The Columbus Blue Jackets have actually played well of late.

This was fairly predictable. The Blue Jackets got Rick Nash back from his injury woes, and Sergei Fedorov has started to fit in with his new team. Plus, the Columbus brass acted decisively to publicly buy into the plan by signing Doug MacLean to a contract extension, giving further credence to the notion that the team believes it is headed in the right direction. The Jackets' terrible start to the season has scuttled their chances to make the playoffs this year, but if they can build fan interest in the team the rest of the year, and have some momentum going into the off season, they'll be a playoff contender next season.

Columbus Blue Jackets winger Rick Nash

Gretzky is calling on his veterans to "calm the waters," but also for his young stars to lift the veterans, just as Jarome Iginla, Eric Brewer, Ed Jovanovski lit a spark in 2002.

Rick Nash gets it.

"We're not finishing," said Nash, the young Columbus Blue Jackets winger who performed brilliantly for Canada at the world championships last years.
Nash was probably lumping Dany Heatley and Joe Thornton in with him as frustrated snipers. No Canadian scorer has more than three points in four games. Heatley, Shane Doan and Jarome Iginla have two goals each, all scored against Italy and Germany.
At Monday's practice, Heatley was playing on a line with Brad Richards and Kris Draper, an indication Quinn has given up on the Vincent Lecavalier-Heatley duo.
Nash and Todd Bertuzzi were flanking Thornton, Joe Sakic centered Simon Gagne and Iginla and Lecavalier was with Ryan Smyth and Martin St. Louis.
"That's our job to finish and score some goals," Nash said. "Once we do that, it takes the pressure off everybody."
In the mixed zone of Palasport Olympico, as reporters awaited Gretzky's pass through, an American writer joked that things were so bad with Gretzky's hockey team, he might now only want to accept gambling questions.

Monday, February 20, 2006

Rick Nash says he's fine

NASH IS OK: Rick Nash says he's fine. A high ankle sprain kept him out earlier this season but the Columbus Blue Jackets winger reminded a reporter he hasn't been too bad since he returned.

"I don't think it's an issue," said Nash. "I came back and I scored 17 goals in 30 games. I feel comfortable. I'm sure if I wasn't at the top of my game (physically) then I wouldn't be playing here."

Friday, February 17, 2006

unrestricted free agents Luke Richardson, Cale Hulse and Jan Hrdina

The Blue Jackets have been a very good team of late, and everything on deadline day depends on their spot in the standings. If the Jackets are active, reports say unrestricted free agents Luke Richardson, Cale Hulse and Jan Hrdina - who combine for more than $4 million US in salary could be shipped off for a top-six forward. Forget the Marc Denis trade rumours, as GM Doug MacLean has already said the netminder won't be traded.

Wednesday, February 15, 2006

Brampton's Rick Nash and Jason Spezza

The roster, which includes Brampton's Rick Nash and Jason Spezza, (as a reserve), gathered Monday at Mississauga Iceland Arena for its first practice before flying to Italy later that night. Nash, a third-year player with the Columbus Blue Jackets, is representing Canada for the fourth time in international competition and says despite the pressure that Canadians face it is always something special. "There's so many great players out there it's just a privilege and an honour to be part of it,'' he said. Nash described going to the Olympics as a "dream come true''. At the 2005 World Championships, Nash was named to the all-star team as he helped Canada to a silver medal. At the tournament he played on a line with Simon Gagne and Joe Thornton and Team Canada head coach Pat Quinn had that trio working together during the opening workout. Although Quinn said no final decisions had been made on lines, Nash said he would not mind if that line remained intact. "We have some chemistry together,'' said Nash.

Tuesday, February 14, 2006

Wade Redden paired with Adam Foote

Pronger's defence partner with Canada, Rob Blake of the Colorado Avalanche, also endured a recent health scare. But Blake, who tweaked a groin against the Columbus Blue Jackets on Friday, also declared himself fit.
"I played (Sunday night) in Detroit and had no problems whatsoever," Blake said.
The losses of Pronger and Blake would have been close to disastrous for Canada, given the absences of Scott Niedermayer and Ed Jovanovski, who are injured. There might be good depth for Canada, but Bryan McCabe and Jay Bouwmeester, the replacements for Niedermayer and Jovanovski, are not equally as good.
At practice yesterday, coach Pat Quinn also had Wade Redden paired with Adam Foote, and Bouwmeester with Robyn Regehr. McCabe was with taxi-squad member Dan Boyle and will be the seventh defenceman, but Quinn said he plans on using all seven.

Tuesday, February 07, 2006

Bluejackets winning streak over

Todd Bertuzzi, Anson Carter, Markus Naslund, Mattias Ohlund and Daniel Sedin each had a goal and an assist in Vancouver's 7-4 victory over the Columbus Blue Jackets at GM Place. Sedin and Naslund scored on the power play less than three minutes apart in the third period to thwart a Columbus comeback. Josh Green and Todd Linden also scored for the Canucks, who tied a season-high with five power-play goals, on the way to their sixth consecutive home win. Henrik Sedin and Kevin Bieksa each had two assists, while Alex Auld stopped 29 shots for the Canucks. Rick Nash scored twice but was denied on a penalty shot attempt for Columbus, which had its franchise-record five-game winning streak broken. Rostislav Klesla had a goal and an assist, and David Vyborny had three assists for the Blue Jackets.

Sunday, February 05, 2006

MacLean is in a position to do with the roster

MacLean is in a position to do with the roster as much, or as little, as he wishes. He has seven potential unrestricted free agents and the salary cap is expected to rise. This gives him flexibility.
MacLean has indicated that, of the seven potential unrestricteds, four are a priority — defenseman Radoslav Suchy, center Manny Malhotra and right wingers David Vyborny and Trevor Letowski. These are guys MacLean wants to keep
In the meantime, Richardson, Hulse and Hrdina have to be considered tradable material. (Everyone is, save Nash, when you come right down to it). A number of teams are casting about for defensive depth, and Hulse is a prime candidate to be moved before the March 9 trade deadline. Richardson — former captain, good soldier and dedicated central Ohioan — may not want to be sent away for another team’s stretch run. In any event, he will be consulted, a courtesy he deserves. As for Hrdina, it will be interesting to see whether he continues to play himself into another contract here or gets a handshake and another crack at the market.

Lets hope he does not trade away all the talent again.

Saturday, February 04, 2006

Four Blujackets headed for Olympics

Four Columbus Blue Jackets hockey players are gearing up to head to Turin, Italy, to chase Olympic gold -- for three different teams.
Radoslav Suchy is a journeyman defenseman from a small city in Slovakia. He says playing in the Olympics has been his dream since he was a little kid.
Rick Nash and Adam Foote are both from the Toronto area.
Foote has already won an Olympic gold medal, but he says he's never forgotten that thrill of pulling on a Team Canada jersey for the first time.
David Vyborny is from a city of 50-thousand people that lies in the heart of the Czech Republic. He says he knows that his every move on the Olympic stage will be scrutinized by his country's fervent fans.
The Games of the 20th Winter Olympics will open on Friday.

Friday, February 03, 2006

New rules in the NHL / is it getting old?

Overall league attendance has been setting records month after month and ratings have increased over years past.
Rookie sensations Sidney Crosby and Alexander Ovechkin - along with new rules aimed at increasing action have rekindled interest in the fledgling league.
One of the bigger changes wasn't a change at all. The NHL promised a zero tolerance policy for hooking, holding, tripping, slashing, cross checking and interference. Players who use their stick or free hand to slow any opposing player will be penalized. The NHL needed to end the grappling, wrestling and bear-hugging that sucks the speed and skill from the game.
Combined with the removal of two-line passes, the implementation of tag-up offsides, reducing the size of the neutral zone, and reducing the size of goalie equipment, the NHL product has become more exciting and fast-paced. So far, so good.
Hockey is a team game, not a series of breakaways. Players have to earn scoring chances by outworking and out-skating opponents, and while exciting, the addition of the shootout is a novelty that will wear off once fans have seen enough of them.
One og the things I noticed that way to many ticky tack penalties are being called.

Columbus Bluejackets

Rick Nash is the game’s best young power forward. Nikolai Zherdev is emerging as one of the NHL’s most explosive young forwards. Defenseman Rostislav Klesla is a building block, too. Jarsoslav Balastik could do what David Vyborny has done for Columbus -– develop into a nightly scoring threat.
How did the Blue Jackets finally make it? It took years of good drafting. Klesa came fourth overall in 2000. Goaltender Pascal Leclaire, still a prospect, was picked eighth overall in 2001. Nash was the first overall pick in 2002. Zherdev came fourth overall in 2003.
We’re still waiting to see what top picks Alexandre Picard (eighth overall, 2004) and Gilbert Brule (sixth overall, 2005) will do. But with all these very high picks, the Blue Jackets may grow a base similar to what the Quebec Nordiques built before moving to Colorado.
And we all saw how that turned out.
MacLean had to supplement those blue chippers by acquiring key veterans along the trail, like Vyborny (a free agent signed out of the Czech Republic), goaltender Marc Denis, defenseman Bryan Berard and defenseman Adam Foote,Federoff.

Dan Fritsche’s going to play a lot of games in the NHL

Center Ben Simon, 27, was recalled from Syracuse to take Fritsche’s spot on the fourth line, between Jody Shelley and Steven Goertzen.
It’s Simon’s second stint this season with the Jackets. He played 6:14 in a 2-1 shootout win over Calgary on Wednesday.
"There’s not a whole lot different between Fritsche and Simon," Gallant said, "except that Fritsche’s 20 years old.
"Dan Fritsche’s going to play a lot of games in the NHL, there’s no doubt about that. It’s just that right now this is best for him. He needs to play."
Fritsche, a Parma native, could return to the Blue Jackets after the Olympic break. He will play for the Crunch today in Cleveland.

Thursday, February 02, 2006

Bluejackets looking for talent NHL-caliber talent in the NCAA

Over their first five years as a franchise, the Columbus Blue Jackets have not had good luck in identifying NHL-caliber talent in the NCAA. In fact, only three former college alums currently skate on the Columbus ice, and only one of them, defenseman Duvie Wescott, was developed in-house by the Blue Jackets.
Does any member of the current class of Blue Jacket NCAA prospects have a chance at making an impact on the Nationwide Arena ice? Of the seven current collegians, none have the appearance of developing into an NHL regular at this stage of their amateur careers.
Jeff Genovy -- Clarkson University, Senior, 6’3, 202 lbs.
A highly-touted prospect when Columbus made him their fourth pick in the 2002 NHL Entry Draft (third round, 96th overall), forward Jeff Genovy has developed into a strong, powerful two-way forward in his final season with the Clarkson Golden Knights of the ECACHL. Following seasons of 13, nine and seven points, the big winger has begun to round out his physical game with the scoring touch he displayed in his single season of action in the USHL, posting the highest totals of his collegiate career with seven goals and 13 assists over the first 24 games of the Knights 2005-06 campaign.
Jekabs Redlihs -- Boston University, Senior, 6’2, 182 lbs.
Cut from the same cloth as fellow Riga, Latvia native and current Colorado defenseman Karlis Skastins, Jekabs Redlihs is a large, gritty stay-at-home defenseman for the Boston University Terriers. Manning the blue line for the same Terrier squad as McGuirk, Redlihs is preparing to finish off a collegiate career shortened by injury. Never a consistent scoring threat, Redlihs has seen his point totals drop off significantly from a career high four-goal, 16-assist freshman campaign. Redlihs followed that up with a six-point sophomore year cut short by a broken collarbone, and a somewhat disappointing one-point effort in his 40-game junior season.

Blue Jackets defenseman Bryan Berard accepted a two-year suspension

Blue Jackets defenseman Bryan Berard accepted a two-year suspension from international competition for taking a banned steroid, the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency said Friday.
Since the test Berard failed wasn't part of NHL testing, he won't be subject to league discipline.
A sample taken from Berard on Nov. 12 tested positive for 19-norandrosterone, a steroid that helps athletes add strength and muscle and lose weight. The sample was collected after his name was submitted by USA Hockey as a potential Olympic participant.
"No question, I'm embarrassed about it,'' Berard said after practice Friday. "There's nothing I can do about it now, other than accepting what I've done. We'll learn from it, it was a mistake and it won't happen again.''
The suspension began Jan. 3, the day Berard accepted a provisional suspension, USADA said.
"Mr. Berard's eligibility for play in the National Hockey League is not impacted by this positive drug test,'' Daly said. "We are confident that with the introduction of our new collectively-bargained performance enhancing substances Program, including the educational, testing and penalty elements that are part of that program, the use of banned substances by any NHL players will be eradicated in short order.''

Where is Fritcshe I want him back

The Columbus Blue Jackets brought forward Ben Simon up from their American Hockey League affiliate in Syracuse, N.Y., on Monday and sent down forward Dan Fritsche.
Simon has 11 goals and 11 assists in 40 games with the Crunch this season, including three power-play goals and three short-handed goals. He has played 73 NHL games in his career, including five games with Columbus this season, totaling three goals, an assist and 43 penalty minutes with the Blue Jackets and the Atlanta Thrashers.
Fritsche, a second-round pick in the 2003 draft, had two goals in the Blue Jackets' opener but has just once since and missed four games in October with an ankle injury. He also has five assists this season.
He played 19 games with Columbus in 2003-2004, picking up one goal, and spent last season with Sarnia and London of the Ontario Hockey League, totaling 18 goals and 19 assists in 30 games.

Jackets beat Oilers in shoot out

Both teams have winning streaks on the line as the Edmonton Oilers host the Columbus Blue Jackets at Rexall Place.
Edmonton is coming off an impressive road swing against Pacific Division teams. The Oilers claimed wins over the Anaheim Mighty Ducks, Los Angeles Kings and Phoenix Coyotes to move within five points of the first-place Calgary Flames in the Northwest Division.

Klesla took an accidental highstick

Three minutes into the game, Klesla took an accidental highstick to the face from teammate Adam Foote when they converged for hits on the same Predator.
Klesla lay face-first on the ice for a few moments before skating off to the dressing room.
"Nothing was wrong with the eye, so I was all right," Klesla said. "It took a few stitches, which is OK."
The area surrounding Klesla’s left eye was a puffy mixture of green and black after the game.
Just above his cheek was an inch-long cut with two stitches holding it together.

Vyborny player of the week

The NHL honored the right winger for his two-goal, five-assist output in three victories last week.
"It’s always nice to be named player of the week," Vyborny said after practice yesterday morning. "I think it’s for the whole team and how we’ve played better."
Vyborny had three assists in a 6-5 victory over Vancouver last Tuesday. He added two assists in a 4-3 victory over Minnesota on Friday. Against Nashville the next night, Vyborny scored two goals, including the winner, in a 4-3 victory.
In his past 11 games, he has eight goals and eight assists. The Blue Jackets won eight of those games.
Vyborny attributed much of his success to the continuity of playing on a line with fellow Czechs Jan Hrdina and Jaroslav Balastik, though Rick Nash replaced Balastik late in the victory Saturday.

Doug MacLean Bluejackets

Doug MacLean and his handpicked staff will have at least one more year to show that they’ve turned around a Columbus Blue Jackets team that hasn’t been beyond middling since it hit the ice in fall 2000.
Negotiations on a new deal for MacLean, the team president and general manager, are 90 percent complete, team owner John H. McConnell said yesterday. It will be a one-year contract, renewable annually.
MacLean’s current contract is to expire this summer, as will those of more than 20 officials in the hockey operations department — including assistant GM Jim Clark, coach Gerard Gallant and his assistants, and all of the full-time scouts.

Go Jackets another win

Adam Foote scored a short-handed goal in overtime to hand the Predators their first loss of the season, 3-2 in front of 15,110 at Nationwide Arena on Wednesday night.

Referee"s ya got to love em

Now thats funny LOL

Get rid of the goons in hockey

Couldn't the NHL make one itsy-bitsy, teeny-weeny concession to law and order, though? Get rid of the goons -- those guys who aren't very good players at all, but who are assigned a place on the team only to attack good players. Everybody knows who they are. They could be outlawed as sure as baseball eliminated spitball pitchers. Then, if you got rid of the goons and a few fights between normal players broke out spontaneously, people like me could enjoy a fight with a clean conscience. Well, all right, just a slightly smudged conscience.

More hockey fights needed

There's no law that specifically exempts athletes from being prosecuted for assaults that occur during competition, so it's theoretically possible that a prosecutor could file charges every time a winger gets cross-checked or sucker punched. However, there's a gentleman's agreement of sorts that exists between professional sports leagues and the authorities: As long as the NHL polices itself, and metes out fines and suspensions to offenders, prosecutors generally leave it alone
Both sides prefer it that way: the NHL because it doesn't want the courts interfering with its business, and prosecutors because guilty verdicts would be few and far between. "Implied consent" is an accepted defense against assault charges, and it's clear that NHL players realize that serious roughhousing is part of their job. Many simple assault cases also depend on the willingness of victims to press charges, and few if any pro hockey players want to carry their on-ice feuds into the courts.

Columbus Blue Jackets put out the Flames

CALGARY, Alberta (AP) -- Columbus Blue Jackets coach Gerard Gallant gave Marc Denis a rare start in consecutive start. It turned out to be a good decision. Denis made 36 saves during the game then added two more clutch stops in the shootout to lead Columbus to a 2-1 victory aagainst the Calgary Flames on Wednesday night.
The shootout was over quickly thanks to goals by Jaroslav Balastik and Rick Nash, the first two Columbus shooters, and Denis' stops on Tony Amonte and Jarome Iginla.
''I'm a big fan of the shootout right now because I'm 2-0 and I've stopped all five shots I've seen,'' said Denis, who has won his last five starts. Especially gratifying to Denis was clinching the win with a stop on Iginla.
''I was glad I could face one of the best players in the NHL 1-on-1 to decide the game, that's a thrill right there,'' said Denis, who had been alternating starts with rookie Pascal Leclaire the past month. ''That's why the shootout is such a big deal with the fans and that's why I think the players are fans of it too.''
Nikolai Zherdev scored for the Blue Jackets, winners of nine of their last 12.
Iginla scored the lone goal for Calgary, which has lost four of their its last five and had its six-game home winning streak snapped. It was the Flames' second straight shootout loss.
''It doesn't feel good losing two in shootouts,'' said Iginla. ''We just couldn't find that second goal in regulation tonight.''
Iginla had a great chance to win it overtime but with Denis down and unable to reach the rebound of Iginla's initial shot, the Flames captain fired the puck off Denis' pad.
''Denis made a good save on that one in overtime,'' Iginla said. ''Obviously I probably should have chipped it up. It would have been nice to see that one go in.''
Calgary also had a power-play in overtime when Columbus forward David Vyborny was penalized for tripping giving the Flames just their second power-play opportunity of the game. However, the Flames could not convert the 4-on-3.
''It was a good test for us tonight,'' Columbus' Sergei Fedorov said. ''We were a patient team, we stayed with the program, and we played well defensively.''
Zherdev tied the game 1-1 at 16:43 of the second period, taking advantage of a pair of bad breaks for the Flames.
Defensemen Robyn Regehr and Rhett Warrener were both whistled for delay of game penalties 6 seconds apart for accidentally shooting the puck over the glass. With 6 seconds left in the two-man advantage, Zherdev was set up at the faceoff dot by Rostislav Klesla and he one-timed a low slap shot inside the near post before goalie Miikka Kiprusoff could slide across the crease.
''I don't think they were careless,'' Sutter said about the penalties. ''They were under pressure and if it hits one inch down then its out of the zone and they were both trying to ice the puck.''
Back home after a five-game road trip, Calgary started fast jumping out to a 1-0 lead 5:26 into the first period. Iginla raced down the right wing and zipped a wrist shot from 30 feet out into
the top corner.

Columbus Blue Jackets brief history

The Columbus Blue Jackets were named after the many Civil War combatants who hailed from Ohio, which contributed more of its population to the Union Army than any other state.
The city of Columbus was awarded their NHL expansion franchise in June of 1997. It was a risky venture, making inroads into a city that is recognized as one of the most fervent college football bastions in the country.
Nationwide Arena was financed by private investors through Nationwide Insurance, and the stadium was built in downtown Columbus, one of the nicest middle-sized cities in the NHL.
Unlike most expansion teams, the Blue Jackets had their franchise's finest season in its inaugural year. Since then, they've struggled mightily, although not for lack of fan support. The Columbus faithful are loud and heavily partisan, which makes a night out at Nationwide Arena a lot of fun.
inaugural season: 2000-2001
Number of years in the league: Four
Number of times in the playoffs: None
Final appearances: None
Stanley Cups: None
Best season: 2000-2001 (28-39-9-6, 71 points)
Worst season: 2001-2002 (22-47-8-5, 57 points)
Number of coaches: Three
Best coach: Dave King (2000-2002)
Worst coach: Probably Doug MacLean (2002-2003), the general manager, who took over the reins after he fired King in 2002. It's not so much that MacLean was a bad coach, but the Blue Jackets struggled during his reign behind the bench, and I've never liked the notion that the GM can be an effective bench coach.
Best captain: Lyle Odelein (2000-2002)
Worst captain: Ray Whitney (2002-2003)
Best trade: On March 13, 2001, the Blue Jackets traded center Kevyn Adams and a fourth-round draft pick to Florida for Ray Whitney and future considerations. Whitney went on to have two great seasons for Columbus, while Adams has had a mediocre career.
Worst trade: They haven't really made a terrible trade yet.
Best first-round draft pick: Rick Nash (2002)
Worst first round draft pick: Rostislav Klesla (2000)
Loves to play: New York Islanders (5-0-1-0)
Hates to play: Colorado (1-14-1-0)
Ten best players: Ray Whitney, Geoff Sanderson, Andrew Cassels, Marc Denis, Ron Tugnutt, Rick Nash, Espen Knutsen, David Vyborny, Mike Sillinger, Tyler Wright