What a difference seven weeks can make!
As the Blue Jackets begin another home-and-home series on consecutive nights with the Detroit Red Wings let's look back on the first set of back-to-back games.
It was seven weeks ago tonight, the Blue Jackets were set to host the Red Wings in the first of a back-to-back home and home series. With a victory at Nationwide Arena the Blue Jackets would not only take over first place in the Central Division but would be number one overall in the entire Western Conference.
The Jackets lost the game 2-1 despite out shooting the Wings 35-32. In looking back not only on the first game, but the weekend series in which his team was swept, Coach Scott Arniel says, "I liked the way we played the first night and actually the first thirty minutes of the second game. We played five good periods against them."
The Jackets lost the second game at Joe Louis Arena 4-2 despite another solid first period and a 1-0 lead courtesy of Derick Brassard goal. The Blue Jackets are 6-14-3 since that Thanksgiving weekend with only the New Jersey Devils having a worse record since that time.
That said, Arniel says the CBJ have a chance to turn things back around starting tonight.
"We need something to jump start us from the doldrums we are in, he said. "We have to find a way."
Steve Mason returned to practice yesterday and told me he felt good maybe even better than he expected after being shutdown for several days. If there are no ill effects from yesterday's practice he will get the start tonight against the Red Wings. Rick Nash took a second straight maintenance day to rest a nagging lower body injury but is expected to play tonight.
Game time is 7 p.m. with Blue Jackets Live getting things underway from Nationwide at 6:30 p.m.
*Throughout the season, AAA will bring you the Broadcaster's Blog - Rimer's Game Day Ramblings. The Columbus Blue Jackets' television play-by-play man will try to keep you updated on all the season action through his blogs, especially when the Blue Jackets are on the road.