Big tests are a real pain … but they can be a blessing in disguise when you pass them with flying colors.
Let’s set the stage for Sergei Bobrovsky and the Columbus Blue Jackets.
- Early in the game, they generate a 2-0 and then 3-0 lead.
- The universe can’t have Columbus getting too comfortable, however, so the Blue Jackets suffer two jarring injuries to their defense.
- With that, the Blue Jackets were down to four defensemen, with a healthy lead, against a Nashville Predators team that can score in buckets.
Sounds like a scary challenge for Bob in particular, right?
It was, at times, but he was game to the task. Remarkably, he didn’t allow a single goal as the Blue Jackets won 4-0.
As you can see from this chart from Natural Stat Trick, the Predators really poured it on as the game went on.
All of a sudden, the Blue Jackets aren’t just spoiler material. They’re now a beast that’s starting to sniff possible playoff hopes.
Just look at their work in November alone.
They’ve won six of nine games, including four of their last five. Bobrovsky’s on a four-game winning streak himself.
Yes, Columbus dug itself a big hole, but isn’t this team scarier when it’s facing longer odds?
In the span of two minutes, the Columbus Blue Jackets built a 2-0 lead against the Nashville Predators, and they scored each tally with style.
Really, the bigger question is: which goal was prettier.
You can see the first of two above.
Kerby Rychel deserves most of the credit on that one, as he sent a sublime pass to Gregory Campbell to give Columbus a 1-0 lead.
Ryan Johansen may – or may not – have topped that display of talent, as he pulled out a lobotomizing move to make 2-0.
Watch below … and feel pity for Pekka Rinne/really anyone trying to stop Johansen when he’s rolling.
Updating an item from earlier on Wednesday, the Columbus Blue Jackets placed David Clarkson on injured reserve and recalled Kerby Rychel, as the Columbus Dispatch’s Aaron Portzline reports.
This post goes into deeper detail regarding how Clarkson was hurt.
In a nutshell, he got injured while “tangled up” with Joe Thornton during Tuesday’s 5-2 Blue Jackets win against the Sharks.
Clarkson is likely relieved to be out from under the harsh spotlight in Toronto, yet it’s not as if life has gone perfectly in Columbus, either. He’s been hampered by injuries essentially from day one, and it doesn’t look like things are getting any easier anytime soon.
Break up the Columbus Blue Jackets.
All joking aside, the team has to feel a little better on Tuesday, as their 3-1 win against the New Jersey Devils gives them two straight wins.
Yes, that’s their first winning streak just days after their first win of the season. Those are some useful firsts, and hey, they at least came in October.
Maybe the most promising news is that Sergei Bobrovsky was in the net for each win, this time stopping 23 out of 24 shots for New Jersey.
Now, it’s maybe too early to get too excited. Beyond the hole they’re still in, they only managed 14 SOG.
John Tortorella & Co. will probably take it, even if he might have needed to yell a bit tonight.
New face, same results.
OK, that’s not entirely fair – not to Columbus’ better efforts in this nightmare, not to what they managed tonight – but that’s the nature of the beast.
When you go 0-for-8, people are going to be harsh.
The Blue Jackets gave the Minnesota Wild a good fight tonight, but the Wild won 3-2.
With that, the discussion largely pivots to moral victories.
- Columbus generated more shots on goal.
- Sergei Bobrovsky wasn’t … disastrous.
- We get to laugh at Tortorella’s inevitably awkward press conferences.
In other words, crack out the Herm Edwards “we can build on this”-type comments, as that’s about as good as it gets right now.
The big question: did Columbus already dig itself too much of a hole to make a credible playoff push? They’re already down 8/82 games without a single standings point.