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."

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