Many prominent members of the Columbus Blue Jackets once called a lot of shots in St. Louis, so it makes sense that the Blues’ success can be heartening.
(Especially when Blue Jackets staffers probably want to talk about anything other than the enormous disappointment that was the 2015-16 season.)
Team president John Davidson and GM Jarmo Kekalainen discussed the bittersweet feelings that come with seeing the Blues go deep – oh yeah, and also the Blue Jackets’ past season – with the Columbus Dispatch.
“I’m proud of what we did in St. Louis,” Davidson said. “I’m a Blue Jacket now, without question. But it makes me feel good, and Jarmo is the same way … we feel stronger about what we’re doing here, because you see what’s happening there.
“They have had their trials and tribulations in St. Louis. But they have been a really good team for a number of years, and just look at them now.”
You can practically read his mind: He hopes that, soon enough, they’ll say “look at us now.”
Success in sports can be funny, but it must be especially odd for general managers. Sometimes you lay down many of the roots for success, yet someone else might get to take greater advantage of the harvest.
The hope, of course, is that you can pull it off again.
Facing the Columbus Blue Jackets on Tuesday and less than two minutes away from a regulation win, the Philadelphia Flyers couldn’t lock up two critical points in their chase for a playoff position.
Within the span of 1:04 in the third period, the Flyers watched as their two-goal lead deteriorated. Boone Jenner got Columbus on the board and Cam Atkinson tied the game with eight seconds remaining in regulation.
Overtime solved nothing. In the end, Philadelphia lost by a final score of 3-2 in the shootout. Jenner was the only player to score in the breakaway contest.
At 18:56 of the third period in the Flyers/Blue Jackets game, video review supported the referee’s call on the ice that Boone Jenner’s stick was at or below the level of the crossbar when he deflected the puck into the Philadelphia net. According to Rule 38.4 (vi) “The determining factor is where the puck makes contact with the stick in relation to the crossbar. If the puck makes contact with the portion of the stick that is at or below the level of the crossbar and enters the goal, this goal shall be allowed.” Good goal Columbus.
Just like that. So close to a win, only to see it end in a shootout loss. The Flyers still earn the single point.
The Flyers even got help on the out-of-town scoreboard, as the Tampa Bay Lightning crushed the Red Wings by a score of 6-2. Had the Flyers won their game, they would’ve moved one point ahead of Detroit for that final Wild Card spot.
As it stands now, the Flyers still move into the Wild Card. They’re tied in points (83) with the Red Wings, with a game in hand.
Dubinsky: Blue Jackets might not be in playoff picture, but, ‘We just have to play harder’
Another year and another occasion in which the Columbus Blue Jackets will miss the playoffs, barring a miraculous turn of events in the final weeks of this NHL regular season.
The Blue Jackets, who earlier this season fired Todd Richards as coach and hired John Tortorella as his replacement and then later traded center Ryan Johansen to Nashville, lost 3-1 to the Detroit Red Wings on Thursday. Columbus sits only ahead of the Toronto Maple Leafs in the Eastern Conference basement.
Afterward, Tortorella said he thought this was a “lousy game” and that it “stunk,” as per Sportsnet.
That’s losses in three straight for the Blue Jackets and losses in four of their last six. It seems the problem Thursday wasn’t so much the result, but the effort against Detroit.
“Listen, I know we’re not going to make the playoffs,” said Brandon Dubinsky, as per the Columbus Dispatch. “But we have a lot of pride in here. I have a lot of pride myself. We just have to play harder. We didn’t play hard enough.
“It shouldn’t be hard. We make millions of dollars to play hockey. It’s an amazing job, an amazing life, an amazing blessing. It’s your job. I don’t care where you are (in the standings) or what time of year it is, your job is to play your role the best you can and nothing else.”
Blue Jackets make three recalls, including prospect Bjorkstrand