It's a Michigan Weekend and the Blue Jackets begin a home-and-home series with the Red Wings and wrapped around tomorrow's Ohio State-Michigan game here in Columbus.
The back-to-back Wings/Jackets games will certainly be a big test for both teams. This morning I talked to Red Wings General Manager Ken Holland, who feels his team has more depth this season than last, because of the additions of Mike Modano and Jiri Hudler. The Wings currently lead the conference while the Jackets are tied in points but have one more victory but have played one more game.
Detroit has the West's best goal differential a plus-14 while Columbus is second at a plus-12.
A lot has been discussed by members of the media about the potential of the Blue Jackets leading the division and the conference,come Sunday, with a big weekend. Coach Scott Arniel's perspective is a bit different, as it should be. When asked about the significance of the weekend series and tonight's game in particular, the Jackets coach said, "It will be a great test for us but it's just one game. It's a divisional game and we have got to be good." He added that you gain confidence by beating the good teams, but he is most interested in establishing home ice against all Divisional opponents.
Steve Mason gets the start in goal for the Blue Jackets tonight and he will face Detroit's Jimmy Howard. The Wings have given up at least four goals in each of their last three games and it's an area that both the coaches and the players said today they want to refocus on their defensive game.
A big crowd is expected tonight as the Blue Jackets will wear their New Third Jersey unveiled Wednesday night at The Mall at Tuttle Crossing and on FOX Sports Ohio.
Our coverage from Nationwide this evening begins at 6:30 p.m. with Blue Jackets Live hosted by Ray Crawford, followed by game coverage at 7 p.m. and the game again tonight is in HD.
*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.