Around the NHL in 30 Days – Columbus Blue Jackets

Today in FanSided’s Around the NHL in 30 Days we have the focus on the Columbus Blue Jackets at the Fire that Cannon blog. Ah the ‘Jackets… for so many years you have been so quiet on the trade front, the free agent front, the playoff front… and pretty much anything else in the NHL. But this summer all of that changed. You made a huge splash by trading for all-star center Jeff Carter to play with sniper Rick Nash. You made a splash in the free agent market by locking up James Wisniewski for the next little while (and perhaps overpaying – but that’s the market these days). Playoffs? You made it once a couple of years ago, and this year you put the rest of the NHL on notice that you’re planning to return this year.

Here’s a snippet of what Joe Reader has written about his team:

Perhaps a bigger factor in the potential success of the Columbus Blue Jackets in 2011-12 is the play of goaltender Steve Mason. The bad thing is that Mase seems to know this, and hasn’t exactly handled the pressure well. Some upgrades on the defensive unit and some added offensive production should help to diffuse this; but it’s still going to be up to Mason to stand up and be far more confident than he appeared in 2010-11.

Let’s see how the Sharks have done against CBJ last year:

4 Games: Sharks won 2, and lost 2 (one loss was in overtime)

The ‘Jackets were a thorn in the Sharks’ side last year, playing them extremely tough in all of the 4 games. CBJ blanked the Sharks 3-0 and won 3-2 in overtime, while the Sharks won two games, both by a score of 3-2. These results are certainly surprising… you wouldn’t think that a non-playoff team like CBJ would give the Sharks such a headache. Yet that’s the beauty of the NHL – every team that plays hard can win on any given night.

I think the ‘Jackets are gonna fight hard for a playoff spot this year, but like the Colorado Avalanche, I think CBJ will improve over last year but just miss the playoffs once again. But if Steve Mason gets hot, who knows? Time will tell.

Check back tomorrow as FanSided’s Around the NHL in 30 Days will continue!

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Topics: Around The NHL In 30 Days, CBJ, Columbus Blue Jackets, Fansided, James Wisniewski, Jeff Carter, Rick Nash, San Jose Sharks, Steve Mason

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