GAMES 51-60 (5-4-1, 18-35-7)
This stretch of games started off with a little bonus hockey - 1.8 seconds to be precise - thanks to the NHL's "Clockgate" game against the Kings in game 51. CBJ GM Scott Howson raised a fuss about it, and I offered a couple Glass Banging thoughts on his part in the matter...as well as his place in the world of hockey.
Derick Brassard was slowly getting his game together after
Vinny Prospal also signed onto his unique "one year contracts for life" deal with Howson and the Blue Jackets (commentary from yours truly and Greg, who offers one of the best graphics of the season). If memory serves correct, Prospal was the only CBJ roster player to get an extension in the middle of the season. So much for locking players up early.
Then Howson hit the road to find potential trade suitors (including suitors for Rick Nash and his monster contract). I suggested that he might be leaning on Prospal for insight, as that is in character for Howson.
And while Gallos was busy pumping out The Definitive History of the Columbus Blue Jackets (which I maintain is must-read material for any serious CBJ fan), I did a little pop-history of my own with my assertion that Scott Howson is really on to Howson 4.0 -- his fourth operational iteration in five years in Columbus.
I then finally attended a Todd Richards practice and don't think I'm overstating things to suggest that I was blown away by what I saw. Night and day difference - for the better - from what I saw under Scott Arniel.
For pure bloggy goodness, few things this season beat the last minute CBJ Haiku Contest that we used as a vehicle to give away a bunch of free tickets courtesy of OhioHealth. I strongly urge everyone to go read through the haikus in the comments. Here are the winners.
I started tracking scout attendance at CBJ games as a means to divine who potential trade deadline partners might be. And Howson and crew were also out hustling the team's star players.
A little game note to wrap up this stretch of games: Game 60 was really something else. A 6-3 win over the Sharks, it was a game where - finally - it seemed like everything clicked. In a season full of games where I was as likely to ask for my money back as enjoy myself, this was a genuine pleasure. (Recap, further thoughts)