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Blue Jackets Close Four-Game Homestand against Oilers

by Jeff Rimer / Columbus Blue Jackets

November 16

After today's morning skate Blue Jackets coach Ken Hitchcock reflected back on Friday's win over Anaheim, saying it was "the best we've played for a long time!"

The Jackets host Edmonton in the final game of a four-game homestand tonight. The Blue Jackets will then hit the road for their longest trip of the season... five games in eight nights and Coach Hitchcock is looking for his squad to fly to Dallas Wednesday with some more momentum from a win over the Oilers.

It's the second meeting between the two teams and back in October the Jackets, you'll recall, blew a 4-1 second period lead and lost 6-4. The key tonight is not to allow the likes of Dustin Penner and Ales Hemsky the room to free wheel as they did back in Edmonton where each recorded five-point nights! Columbus also must be disciplined - stay out of the penalty box! Edmonton scored three power-play goals on seven chances back in October.

Despite the concern about the health of Rusty Klesla, the Jackets warrior will be in the lineup tonight. Klesla fell hard into the boards Friday night but was feeling much better today and he will play tonight. As pronounced by Coach Hitchcock over the weekend Mathieu Garon will be rewarded with another start tonight after his solid effort Friday and Steve Mason, fighting back spasms, will back Garon up tonight despite missing today's morning skate. Nikolai Khabibulin will start for the Oilers. Tom Sestito recalled from Syracuse will play tonight on the fourth line with Blunden and Boll... that will create some energy won't it?

Game time at Nationwide is 7 p.m. and excellent seats are still available. If you are unable to join us, the game will be telecast in HD beginning with Blue Jackets live at 6:30 p.m.

*Throughout the season, AAA will bring you the Broadcaster's Blogs - "Bobby Mac", "Davidge Dishes" and "Rimer Ramblings." The Columbus Blue Jackets radio and television analysts will try to keep you updated on all the season action through their blogs, especially when the Blue Jackets are on the road.

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