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Preview: Blue Jackets look to start strong on Opening Night vs. Islanders

Here's all the information you need to know to be ready for the game

by Alison Lukan AlisonL / BlueJackets.com

GAME 1: BLUE JACKETS VS. ISLANDERS

NATIONWIDE ARENA, 7:00 P.M.

TV: FOX SPORTS OHIO / FOX SPORTS GO

RADIO: 97.1 & BLUEJACKETS.COM

The 2017-18 season officially begins Friday as the Blue Jackets welcome the New York Islanders to Nationwide Arena for the Jackets' season opener.

Here's all the information you need to know to be ready for the game:

SERIES RECORD:

2017-18 Season: (0-0-0) Three games remain after Friday's match.

All-Time: 17-8-1-5

"BY THE NUMBERS"

  • 1: This is the first game of the season for both teams.
  • 3: Three of the Jackets first four games are against opponents from the Metro Division. After Friday's game, they face Carolina Tuesday and the Rangers next Friday.
  • 4: The number of rookies playing in the Blue Jackets' lineup Friday: Pierre-Luc Dubois, Gabriel Carlsson, Markus Hannikainen and Sonny Milano.
  • 9: Artemi Panarin dons his number nine jersey for the first time in the regular season. Watch for his dynamic play on the ice. He produced 70-plus points each of the last two seasons, his first two playing in the NHL.
  • 35: Cam Atkinson led the Jackets last season in goals scored (35). He earned a total of 62 points last season and received his first NHL All-Star nomination.
  • 66: John Tavares led all Islanders in total points last season. He had 28 goals and 38 assists in 77 games played.
  • .974: Jaroslav Halak led all preseason goaltenders with a save percentage of .974. Thomas Greiss was second (.961).
  • 5:30: The doors to Nationwide Arena open a little earlier on Friday, starting at 5:30 you can come inside, get your 2017-18 schedule magnet and get ready for NHL hockey.

Video: Calvert talks about the excitement of Opening Night

SEASONS TO DATE:

This is the first game for both teams that goes against their official season record. Coming into this game, the Jackets finished with a preseason record of 4-3-1. The Islanders won six of their eight exhibition games (6-0-2).

Friday is the first game of a back-to-back for both the Jackets and the Islanders. The Jackets will travel to Chicago to take on the Blackhawks Saturday, while New York will return open to start their home schedule against the Buffalo Sabres.

 Video: Sedlak talks about the new additions to the Jackets

FUN FACT

You'll want to get to Nationwide Arena early on Friday. The Blue Jackets are hosting a Plaza Party to kick off the 2017-18 season. Festivities start at 3 p.m. on the Front Street plaza and include live broadcasts from sports radio 97.1 The Fan and FOX Sports Ohio's "Blue Jackets Live" pregame show. In addition to games, music and prizes, fans can watch the Blue Jackets "blue carpet" arrival starting at 3:30 and running until 5 p.m. Fans will also have an opportunity to have their pictures taken with the 2017 trophies won by the Blue Jackets including the Vezina, King Clancy, Mark Messier Leadership Award, and the Jack Adams.

FROM THE COACH:

"It's time," John Tortorella said. "From a coach's point of view, you want to see what you have. No matter what you think you have, we're going to find out as we start playing the games for real."

Video: John Tortorella talks expectations for Opening Night

PROJECTED LINEUP

Panarin - Wennberg -- Atkinson

Milano - Foligno - Bjorkstrand

Dubois - Dubinsky -- Calvert

Hannikainen - Sedlak -- Dalpe

Werenski - Jones

Johnson - Savard

Murray - Carlsson

Bobrovsky

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