When a team outshoots the opposition 39-19, does one not think that it should be a 4-0 shellacking?
Wrong answer. Oh brilliant ones… the CBJ did everything but twirl the twine in this playoff type affair in Calgary. The losers were the continued playoff hopes of all of us in the organization and in the audience, as they grew a little slimmer, but not out. Our destiny remains in the hands of teams ahead of us in the standings, but the flame still flickers as the CBJ play the next 8-11 at home in March.
The CBJ had a 1:19 minute 5-on-3 PP in the second period and were only able to garner one shot on net. Rick Nash had seven shots on goal and had four Grade A chances to "bury the stash" but came up dry. Ron Hainsey had two glorious opportunities, one in the first period and one in the final two minutes of play, but left the scene without denting the 24 square feet. Andrew Murray, Michael Peca and Dick Tarnstrom had chances as well, but could not generate the second and third efforts needed to score goals. It sounds easy and looks easy when it happens, but it is a skill and not a science. There is a need of a few more skilled guys that can help generate much needed offense to win games like this one tonight.
One cannot fault the effort or desire of the team. One cannot look and throw blame to the coaches, as they stymied the offense of Calgary all night. The organizational hockey operations staff will have some minor repair in the off season to add some much needed punch to a team that is a team in all facets of the game.
The lone goal was scored by Craig Conroy who filtered a backhand between the post and the goal stick on the short side of Pascal Leclaire. Conroy was a game time decision as his knee was inflamed the day before and he could not skate. He awoke this morning not feeling ill affects and the swelling was gone… in the morning skate I passed on some experience on issues like this and told him to look at the possibility of GOUT. He giggled… and I didn’t.
The road trip went 1-1-1 good enough for three points out of six. The CBJ out shot the opposition 110-71 on the trip and were outscored 7-6. The real shame lies in the fact of going 0-13 on the PP. Defensively the squad played well enough and as solid as one could ask, killing off 13-14 on the PK.
But hockey fans… it is not over… no… the fat lady has not sang her last song and as hard as George Matthews has been calling the games as of late, he may have to blow one in from the point, a rip wrister that will make it 1-0 on the board. If only it were that easy… but it will be nice to get back home in the confines of NWA. It has been a long 8-of-9 on the road… wins at Detroit, Ottawa, Montreal, Vancouver and a point in Edmonton are only overshadowed by losses in St. Louis, Toronto and Calgary.
Home again... Home Again
*Throughout the season, AAA will bring you the Broadcaster's Blogs - "Davidge Dishes" and "Rimer Ramblings". The Columbus Blue Jackets broadcasters will try to keep you update on all the behind the scenes action through their blogs, especially when the Blue Jackets hit the road. The next road game is 3/19 @Detroit.