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Jared Boll and Jody Shelley were back on the Nationwide Arena ice on Thursday afternoon, but they weren't there to drop the gloves.
That was fine to Mike McGuire, chief innovation and technology officer for the National Space Intelligence Center, who has been a CBJ fan since the team's inception and saw the top two players in penalty minutes in team history go at it with NHL foes plenty of times.

"I know Jared and Jody as the guys who would mix it up a little bit," McGuire said. "You don't really see that a lot in the NHL anymore, so it's kind of the last of a generation for me."
In other words, McGuire -- who shared the same ice with those legends as part of Thursday's Military Appreciation festivities -- wasn't about to see what would happen if he dropped the gloves with either of them.
"Not in a million years," McGuire said. "I've seen those guys fight way too many times. My wife says I have to come home with all my teeth."

Military Appreciation Night welcome

McGuire did just that after the afternoon game, which featured military personnel and civilian employees from Wright-Patterson Air Force Base in Dayton competing with and against Blue Jackets alumni before the military celebration game for the Blue Jackets presented by Elk + Elk.
While the CBJ alums -- Shelley and Boll headlined a list that also included Derek Dorsett, Chris Clark, Fedor Tyutin, Martin Spanhel and Jean-Luc Grand-Pierre in net -- were stars in their own right during their playing careers, the military personnel who also moonlight as recreational players were the true stars of this game.
"I was absolutely excited when I got the call from Mike McGuire," said Sam Bentlin, a developmental engineer for the Space Force who played club hockey at Duke University. "He was like, 'Hey, so just so you know, in a Thursday or two we're gonna be skating out here on NHL ice in the middle of the day with former Blue Jackets players.' I was like, 'That's not a real opportunity. Are you joking?'"
As the game went on, the guests from Wright-Patterson and the Blue Jackets chatted away on the bench, and a good time was had by all. And for those who serve our country, being welcomed at Nationwide Arena was an experience that will be remembered for a long time.
"That's one of the best parts," Bentlin said about talking shop with the former Jackets. "You have a guy who played 1,000-plus games in the NHL and they're just like, 'Oh, hey, what's your name?' It's like, 'Are you kidding me? You're a legend, and I skate for fun on Sundays.' It's pretty awesome."

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