Friday, November 18, 2016

Beating the Best

I can stop pucks with my face!
Tonight the Blue Jackets completed their sweep of Divisional Leaders in the NHL by beating the Metropolitan Division leading New York Rangers by a score of 4-2.  Additionally, the Jackets have taken the season series from the Pacific Division leading Anaheim Ducks, beat the Central Division leading Chicago Blackhawks in Nationwide Arena, and of course manged to eke out a win against Atlantic Division leading Montreal (stick tap to my buddy Bill for pointing this out to me).

Before we start planning the parade route, let's remember that there is a lot of hockey left to play this year.  On the other hand, the last two games have been against fast, capable opponents, and the Jackets have shown patience, and capitalized on errors by the other guy.  Even if certain percentages (e.g. power play) must regress, there is balance in the scoring, which allows the team to score on any given night based on the match-ups, not necessarily based on the play of any individual player.

Another great line by my buddy Bill is his response to Montreal fans he ran into while vacationing in Mexico.  They were quick to point out that Carey Price had not played in the 10-0 Blue Jackets win against Montreal, to which Bill replied "how many goals do you think Price would have scored?"  This seemed to end that angle of the conversation pretty quickly.

So, as the faithful scribes at the Columbus Dispatch have accurately pointed out, the journey to respectability takes more than just beating Divisional leaders.  We need to be able to show we can do that kind of thing in a best of seven series, but we still have a ways to go to get there.

Really amazingly fun game tonight.  The Jackets are playing well, and came out with a franchise record seventh straight home game.  That makes for fun hockey to watch, and I have really enjoyed this run of success.  Props to our young team, please keep it up!


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