After starting the 2014-15 season with four wins in six games, the Blue Jackets were plagued with injuries and had a 6-15-2 record by the end of November.
Despite ending the season on a high-note with a 15-1-1 clip, the team’s overall record was 42-35-5 in 82 regular season games -- putting Columbus nine points behind the Pittsburgh Penguins and unable to clinch a playoff spot in the Eastern Conference.
Over the past few seasons, the Blue Jackets have posted records of 43-32-7 in 2013-14, 24-17-7 in 2012-13 (the lockout-shortened year) and 29-46-7 in 2011-12. At least on paper, the Blue Jackets seem to be set up for their most successful season, but they know better than anyone that the proving takes place on the ice.
With players including Ryan Murray, Sergei Bobrovsky, Brandon Dubinsky and more coming into camp fully healthy, there is a lot of excitement building as training camp awaits in less than three weeks.
According to Josh Gold-Smith at The Score, the Blue Jackets and two other NHL teams are “well-positioned to make 2014-15 a distant memory.”
The other two organizations he believes will fare better in the 2015-16 campaign are the Dallas Stars and the New York Islanders.
Here’s what he had to say about the Blue Jackets:
“The Blue Jackets allowed the sixth-most goals per game and led the league with over 500 man-games lost to injury in 2014-15, but general manager Jarmo Kekalainen isn't worried.
Defenseman Ryan Murray, the team's second-overall pick in 2012, is healthy after being limited to 12 games last season.
Kekalainen acquired forward Brandon Saad from the Chicago Blackhawks as part of a seven-player deal in June.
Provided the Blue Jackets are luckier on the injury front in 2015-16, and if they get more than 51 games from Sergei Bobrovsky, more than 47 from Brandon Dubinsky and more than 31 from Boone Jenner, they could compete for the final playoff spot in the Eastern Conference.”