OK fine, you can laugh a bit. But not too hard, because while Scott Howson’s time as general manager of the Columbus Blue Jackets was widely considered just that — laughable — some of his moves are looking considerably better with time.
For me, Howson’s biggest mistake with the Jackets was rolling the dice with Steve Mason in goal. But to be fair, Howson did eventually solve the team’s goaltending issues by getting Sergei Bobrovsky out of Philadelphia. He just solved it way too late.
Howson also drafted Ryan Johansen with the fourth overall pick in 2010, and perhaps more significantly for his potential candidacy with Vancouver (read this), had some later-round successes with the likes of Boone Jenner, David Savard, Matt Calvert and Cam Atkinson.
Having said all that, selling Howson to Vancouver hockey fans (translation: the people who buy the tickets) could be a challenge. His brand was badly damaged during his time in Columbus, and the Canucks are already a damaged brand themselves.
It’s been getting that spotlight since the Columbus Blue Jackets faced off against the Pittsburgh Penguins in a brisk playoff series, though it wouldn’t be surprising if the bad blood stemmed to Dubinsky’s days with New York.
To some, Dubinsky’s cross-check on Crosby will resonate far more than the end result of this game:
The bottom line is that he’ll get the last laugh, at least for now. (In-game, that moment merely drew a minor penalty.)
That’s because Dubinsky set up the overtime game-winner, and the cherry on the top of that spite sundae came with Crosby being on the ice when it happened:
They’re not just rubbing the Penguins the wrong way.
Cheap shot on a superstar, a little uncalled goalie interference and presto – Blue Jackets win!
The Buffalo Sabres probably deserved better during at least some chunks of their six-game skid, yet Jack Eichel swooped in on Friday to remind fans that there’s a light shining at the end of the tunnel.
You can watch his goal from tonight’s eventual 4-1 win against the Carolina Hurricanes in the video above.
That’s not necessarily the absolute height of his on-ice magic, yet it clearly gave his team a lift:
Coach Bylsma: Feel like after Jack's goal, the game changed for us. #gamechanger