Thursday, December 30, 2010

My Top 11 DBJ posts of 2010

You all had your shot, so now I'm taking mine!  With almost 400 posts to reflect upon over the past year, I enjoyed spending an afternoon and reflecting on this blog and how it's grown over the months and seasons.  Beyond that, simply reliving the memories of a wild 12 months in the life of the Columbus Blue Jackets was a treat.  (I can see why people do these end-of-year retrospectives...)

The style and form of the blog content has changed over the years, too.  I used to write "10 Thoughts" for every game and eventually realized that a "My Take" approach where I jotted down whatever came to mind was a lot more practical.  I've also done some longer-form pieces, mini-series following themes and a little goofiness with graphics manipulation.

In no particular order, here are my 11 favorite posts (or series of posts) offered up over the past year.  It's a slightly different batch than what you chose, but these are the ones of which I'm most proud.  Because this one goes to 11!
I'm not sure I'll ever come up with
a better graphic manipulation than this.
  1. Rosebud - As far back as January, we could tell that something was in the air with the Columbus Blue Jackets.  This post tried to figure out exactly what that was.  And if you look at the conclusions, I'm not sure it was that far off the mark.
  2. Channeling Barry Trotz - Mike Priest suggested he wanted a team dynamic like Nashville, so I got some help from Nashville Predators bloggers to learn more about what makes their team tick in this  five-part (12345) series.
  3. The season that had to happen: My thoughts on the CBJ, 2009-2010 - The season wrap-up...somewhat painful to write yet oddly cathartic.
  4. The CBJ coaching search - 29 posts covering the landscape from early short list scratches to a rather detailed investigation of the finalists (remember the DBJ Coaching Challenge?) and the obligatory post-mortem.  What a ride it was (even if the Jackets didn't hire Kevin Dineen).
  5. A modest proposal: 82 in 10 - It didn't quite get the effect that I wanted, but we DO have more CBJ games on TV and in HD than ever before.
  6. My CannonFest post, or "A funny thing happened on the way to the cookout" - We came. We saw. We ate wings. We talked CBJ hockey.
  7. Time to step up: DBJ's 2010-2011 Columbus Blue Jackets season preview - Player by player, coach by coach, even a couple front office gents. Without question, the most exhausting series I've done thus far.
  8. "Must Win" v. "Should Win" - DBJ's perspective - One of those posts that I keep going back to...if only to keep sane amid the day-to-day insanity that is following a team through an 82-game season.
  9. Changing the culture - Inside and out - Additional ruminations on perhaps the Greatest CBJ Game Ever.
  10. The Hangover - Never thought it would linger this long. Yow.
  11. About the Pittsburgh game and ticket sales - Dissecting the WTF moment of the year for the CBJ. Well, perhaps outside of the Dorsett non-goal against Dallas.
And here's the Honor Roll, those posts that didn't quite make the final cut for the Top 11 but still are worth a gander while you wonder what to do with the remainder of your 2010:
Deliciously simple in design,
epically grand in execution.
And, of course, Milan's still gone.
  1. The Ken Hitchcock Firing Pool is open - Only 2 days later, Hitch was relieved of his head coaching responsibilities.  My prediction was wrong (I figured it would take another month of agony), but the spidey-sense didn't fail me.  (I would be remiss in not reminding everyone that it was The Hockey Writers' Rick Gethin who blazed the trail on this line of thinking, a full two weeks before I posted my piece.)
  2. An Irish Wake for Hitch's Coaching Tenure - Giving the man his due.  He did a lot of good for this franchise.
  3. The Milan Jurcina saga - Whether it was Free MilanKeep Milan or Milan is Free, this blog's love affair with Kris Russell's lumbering Slovakian bodyguard was pure.  We even had t-shirts for a couple of days before the big bad company shut it down.
  4. One shot on goal - I think I might write best when frustrated.  And this was surely a frustrating night. 
  5. Memory Lane: It all started with Sergei Fedorov - Much like the Irish Wake, the reflective posts are awful fun to write.
  6. Something special going on - The 09-10 season ended, but not without a retrospective from the people who made it so much fun despite the less-than-ideal outcome.
  7. The Dark Blue Jacket's 2009-2010 CBJ Most Valuable Player: Fedor Tyutin - Looking past the highlight reels and offering respect to one of the CBJ's unsung heroes of last year's campaign.
  8. Coaching search rumor - CBJ still talking to Arniel? - The post that scooped the Dispatch.  Doesn't happen much at all, but I got one thanks to social networking.  
  9. Tickets! Get yet tickets! - Unabashed boosterism for my favorite NHL team.  
  10. The Dark Blue Jacket CBJ draft party comparison - Point by point, offering you what little insight I had on the two simultaneous events.
  11. Canaries in the coal mine - Reality bites in a rapidly-shifting economy, especially when you're trying to sell expensive tickets to an entertainment event.
  12. The Dark Blue Toddler emerges - Whether it was attending his first practice or becoming BFF's with 1st round pick Ryan Johansen, it's been a pleasure to share this dad's view of his toddler son's introduction into the world of CBJ hockey.
  13. NHL fans' TV frustrations continue: 5 principles to make it right - Pushing the envelope on what this blog could offer the hockey world.
  14. Blue Jackets affiliate with CHL's Fort Wayne Komets - My hockey worlds collide in a new and wonderful way. (Hey, does Springfield have any more players that they can send to Fort Wayne to help 'em out?)
  15. Best. Birthday. Ever. (Courtesy of the Blue Jackets) - One kid's love for the CBJ is cemented forever, and a proud father shares how the team has grown along with his family.
  16. Reasons for concern - Ahem. Have any of these reasons gone away?
  17. Game 14/St. Louis: My Take - Games like this make losing tolerable. What a magic moment in the season thus far.
  18. DBJ's NHL realignment scheme: The Power of Three - If you can't have fun with your blog, then why do it?
  19. On that whole attendance thing... - Hopefully demonstrating that the Blue Jackets' confounding ability to lay eggs in front of their largest crowds of the season hasn't helped things.
  20. Who stays? Who goes? - Let the latest parlor game commence!
  21. Why is Scott Howson not in THN's "100 People of Power"? - Again, writing from frustration.  But tell me I'm wrong on this...just try...

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