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Keep Hope Alive

by Bob McElligott / Columbus Blue Jackets

January 29

Most of the ten years I spent in Syracuse, the schedule was set up much like the Blue Jackets is this year. A ton of road games in the early part of the season and the bulk of the home games in February, March and April. The key is to get the road wins early in the year and then coast into the playoffs, but sometimes things don't go as planned.

There are 15 home games and 11 road games remaining on the schedule. If the Jackets can get on a roll at home, there are quite a few points to be gained. In order to do that, the team has to bring a much better effort than it did last night against the Kings. They can't let the first goal of the game take the wind out of their sails for the rest of the contest, if scored by the opposition. They have to continue to battle and turn the tide, that is what home ice is supposed to be all about.

That being said, they will have to be just as perfect on the road to find a way to reach post-season play. Funny things happen to teams who have all expectations lifted, many times they play loose because they have nothing to lose. They have fun because they're playing with no pressure and then they put together some wins. I'm not saying that a team which has had problems putting together back-to-back wins all year is suddenly going to take off, but I have seen stranger things happen.

There are other factors in as well, like will this team look the same after the trade deadline or will changes be made to look towards the future? Only time will tell.



*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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