Even Columbus practices involve a fair amount of losing


Aaron Portzline of the Columbus Dispatch is reporting another tough loss for the Blue Jackets — this time, from the practice rink.

Rick Nash nailed goaltender Steve Mason in the mask at with a shot this morning, sending the goaltender to his knees before trainers helped him off the ice. Mason was able to leave the skate under his own power, but won’t play tonight against Calgary. Head coach Scott Arniel confirmed that Curtis Sanford will start against the Flames while Allen York — the pride of Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute — has been summoned from AHL Springfield to back him up.

“He’s not good,” Arniel said of Mason. “Yorkie’s on his way in here. (Mason’s) going to miss tonight and we’ll re-evaluate him tomorrow. He got hit pretty good there, hit pretty hard.”

At the risk of further beating a dead horse (*makes whip noise*), I’d once again like to point out what Columbus GM Scott Howson went into the season with in goal:

— Mason (who basically lost his starting gig last year)
— Sanford (who was in the AHL)
— York (who was playing college hockey)
— Mark Dekanich (formerly the No. 3 in Nashville)

So there was depth at the position — but outside of Mason, not a ton of experience at the NHL level. Sanford had over 100 games but had been out of the NHL since 2009.

Impeccable hindsight makes you wonder why a veteran presence like Ray Emery (who Chicago brought in on a tryout) or Marty Turco (still unemployed) wasn’t brought in to compete for a job.