Athletic competition breeds some interesting moments. To me, there is something about the game of hockey that seems to magnify the intensity of these moments. The joy of scoring a goal, the gloom of giving one up, all seem heightened by the relative importance of a goal in a hockey game. The games themselves tend to be full of swirling momentum changes, and the speed and skill of the players makes any hockey game fun to watch.
As the 2010-11 season for the Columbus Blue Jackets winds down, our playoff hopes seem dim. According to our loyal blog master, the Dark Blue Jacket, we have a robust 2.8% chance of making the playoffs. This doesn't bode well. But in a topic that I am sure we will explore in more detail in the off season, the 2010-11 CBJ are a VERY streaky team. Going on a run is in character for this team. Of course predicting whether it will be a winning or losing streak is best left to Hockey Jobu. On a more mundane level, one might wonder where this team will fall out in the history of the CBJ.
With 13 games left to play, the 2010-11 CBJ are tied for the fourth best team in CBJ history at 74 points. A mere 3 wins in those 13 games (or 6 OT games, ugh) ties them as the second best team in CBJ history at 80 points. They need 9 wins to tie the most successful team in CBJ history, at 92 points, and if they could do that I think they would mess up the West standings a bit.
So its pretty safe to say, with 13 games left, that this is the second best team in CBJ history. A lousy .500 record in December and January, and this team is in the playoffs.
As I was talking basketball with my Dad tonight (it being that time of year), he reminded me of an often repeated phenomenon. If you let teams hang around without putting them away, sometimes that can turn on you real fast. And I would submit that the Western Conference has let the CBJ hang around. The Redwings come to town tomorrow, and you could not think of a better representative from the Western Conference to put the dagger in our heart, and put us away.
But this is the second best team in CBJ history. And they sometimes can really rise to the occasion for a Detroit game. (fortunately I am not bound by journalistic integrity, having no integrity and not being a journalist, so I won't mention the times when they didn't rise to the occasion).
But an interim goal of cheering them on to be the second best team in club history is a worthy short term goal, and worth coming out to enjoy the hockey for what it is. And incredibly fast paced game, played by very skilled players in a rambunctious environment. And you never know. It's not over 'till its over, and we ARE a streaky team.