Thanks to all who submitted questions for the offseason's 12th #CBJ mailbag. Hopefully, we'll get together every Thursday/Friday and I'll answer your questions, so send them to @RobMixer anytime.
Jason Liebert (@jel779)
What does the name Blue Jacket really mean and/or stand for? The Civil War, US Navy, War Chief? Also what does Stinger represent?
The team name is an homage to the Union Army soldiers stationed in Ohio during the Civil War.
Here's a brief history lesson: both the state of Ohio and the city of Columbus were significantly influential on the Union Army. Ohio contributed more of its population to the Union Army than any other state, while many of the Blue Coats worn by the Union soldiers were manufactured in Columbus.
Also from the "did you know?" category...the two finalists for team names back in 1997 were "Blue Jackets" and "Justice."
And to your question about our pal Stinger: introduced as "a bug with an attitude," he characterizes the citizens of Columbus known for their hard work and pride for their team.
I heard you were voted #mvp of the @ColumbusCrewSC vs @BlueJacketsNHL soccer game...care to elaborate?
Not much to elaborate on, but I will say that I was among the least valuable.
First off -- the Crew SC staff is terrifyingly good at soccer. I don't think we had more than 13 percent possession, and that may be generous. It was a scoreless tie at the half, but they had plenty of chances in the second half and scored a couple of goals (yours truly was the losing goalkeeper; Mike Battaglia opened with a clean sheet in the first half).
Let's take our digital media teams as an example: Alex Stec from Crew SC (an Ohio University Bobcat, aka the best kind of person) played college soccer TWO WHOLE YEARS AGO so she's really good. Christian Taske, their digital director, grew up playing soccer in Germany and absolutely knows what he's doing on the pitch.
By comparison: I was really good at bags (i.e. cornhole) and flip cup in college, and literally nothing on the golf course (except walking) translates to soccer. It was ugly.
It was just payback for our victory on the ice a few months ago. I think a neutral site, neutral sport face-off is on deck...how about an all-Columbus sports softball playoff at Huntington Park?
Matt Wagner (@bzarcher)
Star Wars is coming this winter. So which color lightsaber do you think some of the #CBJ would carry?
Blue. And only blue.
Joshua Dufford (@joshuadufford)
Here's one for the mailbag: Letestu & Anisimov were big contributors to our PK. Is this a concern? Can our newcomers fill the gap?
They were both really solid penalty killers, Josh, that's for sure. I'm sure their absences will be felt a little in the beginning, as the team adjusts to new PK rotations and tries new combinations in training camp and preseason. That's natural and nothing unexpected, but it's not like the Blue Jackets are short of quality penalty killers outside of Letestu and Anisimov.
Brandon Dubinsky is one of the best two-way centers in the business, and he's a top of the order penalty killer. He and Matt Calvert have caused havoc for opposing teams while shorthanded the last few years, and I expect that will continue. There's a lot of trust from the coaching staff in those guys. Gregory Campbell was brought in for this very reason, and a lot of people around the league will tell you he's one of the elite shorthanded players. Let's go down the list: Boone Jenner, Brandon Saad, Ryan Johansen (and others)...they all will play a role on the penalty and have done so before in their careers.