Thursday, November 7, 2013

DBJ thought he watched CBJ Game 15: New York Rangers

New York Rangers 4 - Columbus 2
The Columbus Blue Jackets slide hit five games tonight as they lost to the New York Rangers, 4-2, in regulation.  They're now 5-10-0, with 10 standings points.  That's one more standings point than the NHL laughingstock Philadelphia Flyers.

Sure, there were plenty of "storylines" with the cross-breeding cross-pollination of the two teams, what with former Rangers Dubinsky, Anisimov, Erixon and Gaborik now on the CBJ and former CBJers Nash (who didn't play due to concussion), Brassard, Dorsett, Moore, Stralman and former abject failure of a head coach Scott Arniel now on the Rangers.

Thing is, that means next to nothing for Columbus fans who want to see their team win a flippin' game.  For the Rangers fans (and media), it's a chance to talk to former players about John Tortorella, the coach who got fired...and not much more.

Here's where I explain the "DBJ thought he watched..." part of this blog title.  I watched the vast majority of the game and, by and large, thought that the team looked way better than they did against Ottawa.  I thought that the team was pushing harder.  I thought that the team was stronger in the offensive zone.  Sure, there were some egregious errors and moment of ... ummmm ... lack of clarity in purpose, but I thought that the team looked better than the amateur hour against Ottawa that led Gallos to blow his legendary cool.

And I was wrong.

Coach Todd Richards blasted his team from the postgame podium, threatening to take the leadership reins away from his locker room.


This, of course, scares me to death and conjures up the post that I dropped when I heard that he was being brought in to buttress Scott Arniel.  Please, Todd, don't bag skate them...

Richards wasn't the only one to howl.  Check out this postgame interview from de facto captain Brandon Dubinsky (turn up the volume - I took this from my TV):


Oh crap.  A combination of the 1,000-yard stare to start with perhaps the most direct, unvarnished interview I've ever seen out of him (note how little he looks down at the "imaginary paper" that I discussed earlier in the week - it's stunning, really).  Wide eyes, looking straight at the interviewer, barely blinking.  Having done a rather detailed evaluation of his interview style, I don't doubt a single word he said tonight.  And I'm very concerned.

So what do I know.

The clock is already ticking on the Columbus Blue Jackets' playoff hopes.  Worse yet, I'm sensing a level of demoralization penetrating the core fanbase.

John Davidson and Jarmo Kekalainen have already demonstrated that they are tone-deaf to Blue Jackets history when it comes to the roster...let's hope that they appreciate what an extended disastrous slump will do to their credibility, and that of the franchise they are trying to serve, in this community at this delicate point in the team's young history.  Simply put, THEY CAN NOT LET THIS SEASON GET AWAY FROM THEM.  If they sense it happening, they need to do something.  Anything.  But get the team back on the rails.

Here's my postgame haiku:

Old Jackets come back
But who cares when you can't win
Tick tick tick tick tick

NEXT UP: The New York Islanders, one of the few teams that the CBJ beat this season (and in a shootout, no less), will be in Columbus at 7PM on Saturday night.

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