GAME 16: BLUE JACKETS AT CAPITALS
VERIZON CENTER, 12:30 P.M.
TV: FOX SPORTS OHIO / FOX SPORTS GO
RADIO: 97.1 FM & BLUEJACKETS.COM
SETTING THE STAGE: The current week and the coming week might prove to be one of the most difficult stretches of the season for the Blue Jackets. Not only is the competition stout, but the schedule is demanding; beginning with Sunday's game against the Capitals (the second meeting between the teams in a span of five days), the Blue Jackets will play five games in seven days with U.S. Thanksgiving wedged in there.
After Sunday's game, the Blue Jackets fly back to Columbus to face the Colorado Avalanche on Monday night at Nationwide Arena. They'll play Calgary on Wednesday (also at home), have Thursday off, then play a back-to-back this weekend against the Tampa Bay Lightning and Florida Panthers on Friday and Saturday, respectively.
This is where energy conservation becomes of the utmost importance.
Columbus withstood a heavy push from the Capitals in their last meeting, a 2-1 OT win on Tuesday, and used a third-period barrage to tie the game and eventually win early in sudden death. Washington did not give the Blue Jackets much ice to work with and the same could be said for the Blue Jackets, who have focused heavily on their checking and play away from the puck.
NOTEWORTHY NEWS: The Blue Jackets recalled Markus Hannikainen from the Cleveland Monsters on Saturday afternoon. He will serve as the team's extra forward on this brief trip to the nation's capital. Expect Sergei Bobrovsky to get the start Sunday, but no decision has been announced yet. Seth Jones (foot fracture) rejoined the team for practice on Saturday, and while he is nearing a return, his status for Sunday's game is doubtful.
PROJECTED CBJ LINEUP:
Saad - Wennberg - Foligno
Jenner - Dubinsky - Atkinson
Calvert - Karlsson - Anderson
Hartnell - Sedlak - Gagner
Werenski - Savard
Murray - Johnson
Nutivaara - Harrington