Blue Jackets head coach Scott Arniel is looking for more offensive production from his top two lines and will reinsert Nikita Filatov into the "top six" tonight against the Montreal Canadiens.
Filatov, according to Arniel, is competing more of late and the head coach added that with the move, No. 28 has to make the most of it and be good every night. Filatov will play with R.J. Umberger and Antoine Vermette. Arniel says Umberger and Vermette play in straight lines, which should help Filatov, although Vermette is off to a slow start offensively himself.
As for the top line of Brassard, Nash and Voracek, they by no means have hit their stride. Nash's goal production is half of what it was last season at this time, Voracek has yet to score a goal and Brassard is just now starting to get his game together.
As for Montreal, the Jackets head coach says "we have to be ready tonight, the Canadiens work hard, they don't give you a lot, have real good offensive players and they have strong special teams." Arneil went on to say, after watching his club through the first 10 games, "we must pressure teams in the offensive end of the ice and be conscious of how we are playing in our own end." He added that he has told the team overall they must play well without the puck.
The Blue Jackets need to be more consistent on a night to night basis. They have yet to really get into divisional play and as the Jackets coach says, if they are going to be a playoff team they need a good divisional record. In summing up the NHL's Central Division the Jackets mentor said, "all the teams in the division are well coached."
Do to the Versus "exclusive night" FOX Sports Ohio will not be televising tonight's game, but it is available through TSN on the "Center Ice" package if you have it.
Our next FOX Sports Ohio telecast will come Thursday from Atlanta against the Thrashers.
*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.