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Weekly Report: Blue Jackets Play Home-and-Home Set with Predators, Host Blackhawks

by Blue Jackets Staff / Columbus Blue Jackets

THIS WEEK'S GAME SCHEDULE (Times ET)


Tue., Mar. 31  NASHVILLE PREDATORS, NATIONWIDE ARENA - 7 p.m.  FSO/1460, CD101
Sat., Apr. 4     at Nashville Predators, Sommet Center - 8 p.m.                   FSO HD/1460, CD101
Sun., Apr. 5    CHICAGO BLACKHAWKS, NATIONWIDE ARENA - 5 p.m.  FSO/1460, CD101

FSO – FOX Sports Ohio; 1460 – WBNS-AM 1460 The Fan; CD101 – CD101.1 FM


BLUE JACKETS AT A GLANCE

Record: 39-29-8, 86 pts./3rd Central Division… Streak: 0-1-1 in last two… Home: 24-12-2, lost last game… Road: 15-17-6, 3-0-2 in last five… Last Week's Results: 1-1-2… Mar. 24 – at Tampa Bay 2, Columbus 1 OT… Mar. 26 – at Columbus 5, Calgary 0… Mar. 28 – at St. Louis 4, Columbus 3 SO… Mar. 29 – St. Louis 5, at Columbus 2.

 

WESTERN CONFERENCE "MARCH TO THE PLAYOFFS"
Standings as of Mar. 30 (*division leaders)

  Team
GP Record Pts. Games Left Games Left - Home Games Left - Away Opp. this Week
1. Y-*San Jose 75 49-15-11 109 7 3 4 at CGY, at EDM, ANA, at ANA
2.
X-*Detroit
76 49-18-9 107 6 4 2 STL, MIN
3. *Calgary 75 43-26-6 92 7 3 4 SJ, at DAL, at MIN
4. Chicago 74 40-23-11 91 8 4 4 at MTL, STL, NSH, at CBJ
5. Vancouver 75 41-25-9 91 7 4 3 at MIN, ANA, at EDM, COL
6. Columbus 76 39-29-8 86 6 3 3 NSH, at NSH, CHI
7. Nashville 76 38-30-8 84 6 2 4 at CBJ, at CHI, CBJ
8. St. Louis
76 37-30-9 83 6 1 5 at CHI, at DET, at DAL
9. Anaheim 76 38-32-6 82 6 2 4 at EDM, at VAN, at SJ, SJ
10. Edmonton
76 36-31-9 81 6 5 1 ANA, SJ, VAN
11. Minnesota 76 36-32-8 80 6 4 2 VAN, CGY, at DET
12. Dallas
75 33-33-9 75 7 2 5 at PHX, at LA, CGY, STL

 X-clinched playoff spot; Y-clinched division title

OPPONENTS AT A GLANCE
NASHVILLE PREDATORS (38-30-8, 84 pts./4th Central Division):
Head Coach Barry Trotz… Nashville is riding an eight-game regulation unbeaten streak (5-0-3) and has won three in a row… Nashville ranks fifth in the NHL in penalty killing (83.5 pct.) and is eighth in goals-against average (2.68)… The club is led by RW J.P. Dumont (15-44-59 in 76 games), D Shea Weber (21-29-50, 9 PPG in 75 games) and LW Steve Sullivan (10-16-26 in 35 games since returning from injury)… Rookie G Pekka Rinne is 27-11-4 with a 2.26 GAA, .921 SV% and seven shutouts in 46 games… The Blue Jackets are 14-31-4 all-time vs. the Predators, including 10-12-2 at home… The clubs split a home-and-home set on Oct. 17-18 with Columbus winning 5-3 at Nationwide Arena and Nashville rebounding the next night with a 6-3 win at Sommet Center… The Jackets won the next meeting, 2-1 in a shootout, at home on Dec. 11 and suffered a 4-2 loss at Sommet Center on Mar. 5.

CHICAGO BLACKHAWKS (40-23-11, 91 pts./2nd Central Division): Head Coach Joel Quenneville… The Hawks are 3-1-2 in their last six games and had a three-game winning streak snapped Sunday in a 4-0 loss vs. Vancouver… Chicago is the third-highest scoring team in the NHL (3.22 goals per game)… Club is led by RW Martin Havlat (26-42-68 in 73 games) and second-year standouts RW Patrick Kane (24-40-64, 13 PPG in 72 games) and C Jonathan Toews (30-33-63, 12 PPG and six GWG in 74 games)… G Nikolai Khabibulin is 20-8-6 with a 2.54 GAA, .915 SV% and one shutout in 36 games… The Blue Jackets are 23-22-4 all-time vs. the Blackhawks, including 14-9-2 at home… Columbus is 19-13-2 since the start of the 2003-04 season… Chicago won the first two meetings – 4-3 in a shootout at Nationwide Arena on Nov. 1 and 3-1 at United Center on Dec. 14 – before the Jackets earned a 5-3 win in Chicago on Mar. 13 and a 4-3 overtime win at home on Mar. 18.

 


PRACTICE SCHEDULE, Mar. 31-Apr. 6 (times subject to change)

Tuesday, Mar. 31    Nationwide Arena - 10:30 a.m. ET
Wednesday, Apr. 1 Dispatch Ice Haus - 11 a.m. ET
Thursday, Apr. 2      Dispatch Ice Haus - 10:30 a.m. ET
Friday, Apr. 3            Dispatch Ice Haus - 10:30 a.m. ET
Saturday, Apr. 4       Sommet Center, Nashville, TN - 11:30 a.m. CT
Sunday, Apr. 5         No Practice Scheduled (vs. Chicago, 5 p.m.)
Monday, Apr. 6         Dispatch Ice Haus - 11 a.m. ET

 


OhioHealth INJURY REPORT

C Derick Brassard (dislocated shoulder, Dec. 18) will miss the rest of the season… LW Fredrik Modin (Mar. 5 at Nashville) is day-to-day… D Ole-Kristian Tollefsen (Injured Reserve, Feb. 21) is expected to miss four to six weeks… LW Jason Chimera (Injured Reserve, Mar. 2) is day-to-day… Man Games Lost to Injury: 311.

 


INDIVIDUAL NOTES

NASH SETS CAREER HIGH FOR POINTS:
LW Rick Nash tallied 2-5-7 in four games last week, including a career-high 0-4-4 vs. Calgary on Mar. 26, to raise his season totals to 36-38-74 in 72 games. In addition to setting a new career high in points, which ranks 19th in the NHL, he ranks tied for seventh in goals and tied for second with five shorthanded goals. He has collected 13-13-26 in his last 21 games and needs five goals in his last six games to match his career high of 41 set in 2003-04.

WILLIAMS RIDING FOUR-GAME POINTS STREAK: C/RW Jason Williams is riding a four-game points streak (2-3-5) and has 5-8-13 in his last 13 games with points in 10 of those contests. After registering 7-11-18 with a -9 plus/minus rating in 41 games with Atlanta, he has notched 10-15-25 and is +6 in 33 games with Columbus. He picked up his second multi-goal game of the season – and first as a Blue Jacket – with two power play goals vs. Calgary on Mar. 26.

MASON RECORDS TEAM RECORD 10TH SHUTOUT: Rookie G Steve Mason made 33 saves to record his 10th shutout of the season in a 5-0 win over Calgary on Mar. 26. He broke the previous club record of nine shutouts set by Pascal Leclaire in 2007-08 and his 10 shutouts are the most by a rookie since Chicago's Tony Esposito set the NHL rookie record with 15 in 1969-70. Mason is 31-18-5 with a 2.24 goals-against average, .918 save percentage and 10 shutouts in 55 games, leading the NHL in shutouts, ranking third in goals-against average, seventh-T in save percentage and ninth-T in wins.

MISCELLANEOUS: LW Kristian Huselius has tallied 3-10-13 in his last 13 games, including a season-high 0-4-4 vs. Calgary on Mar. 26… C Antoine Vermette has tallied 6-3-9 in 11 games with Columbus after collecting 9-19-28 in 62 games with Ottawa… RW Jakub Voracek has collected 9-27-36 in 74 games, ranking second among NHL rookies in assists and 10th in points. He is three points shy of Rick Nash's club record for points by a rookie (17-22-39 in 74 games in 2002-03)… C Manny Malhotra scored his 11th goal of the season vs. Calgary on Mar. 26 to record his 32nd point of the season, which is a new career high. He has 11-21-32 in 71 games this season, surpassing the 10-21-31 he picked up in 58 games in 2005-06.

 


TEAM NOTES

BLUE JACKETS POST FIFTH-STRAIGHT WINNING MONTH:
With an 8-4-2 record and one game remaining in March, the Jackets have secured a franchise-best fifth consecutive winning month. Since going 4-6-0 in October, the club has posted monthly records of 6-4-3 (November), 7-6-1 (December), 7-5-1 (January) and 7-4-1 (February) prior to this month's action. The Jackets close the month on Tuesday vs. Nashville.

MISCELLANEOUS: Since beginning the season 3-6-0 in their first nine games, the Jackets have gone 36-23-8… Columbus has posted a 17-9-3 record since the All-Star break… The Jackets have gone 15-6-3 since Feb. 7 with 21 of those 24 games coming against teams that are currently .500 or better… Through 38 home games, the club's average attendance is 15,470. Last year, Columbus averaged 14,509 in 41 home games with two sellouts… The Jackets have averaged 16,700 fans in 21 home games with six sellouts of 18,144 or more since Dec. 27… Columbus has begun a stretch that has them playing seven-straight games within the Central Division prior to the season finale on Apr. 11 against Minnesota… The club is currently 8-9-2 vs. division opponents this season… With a 2-1 OT loss at Tampa Bay on Mar. 24, Columbus finished the season with a 13-3-2 record vs. Eastern Conference opponents.

 


UPCOMING PROMOTIONS

TUESDAY, MAR. 31 VS. NASHVILLE PREDATORS:
"Sugardale $1 Hot Dog Night" – Fans can enjoy Sugardale hot dogs for just $1… "alive! Jackets Night Out" – All fans ages 21 and older receive one ticket, one Donatos Pizza and one beer for one low price. Upper Bowl packages are $30 per ticket, while Lower Bowl packages are $50 per ticket… "Giant Eagle Advantage Card Night" – Fans who bring their Giant Eagle Advantage Card to the Nationwide Arena Ticket Office can receive $10 off select seat locations… "Schwebel's GIANT Deal" - offers two tickets and one Stinger's Kids Meal (hot dog, small soda, chips and cookies) for just $45… "Rush CBJ Student Tickets presented by Raising Canes" – High School and College students can get Blue Jackets tickets for student prices one hour before games at the Nationwide Arena Ticket Office. Upper bowl seats are just $15, lower bowl seats are just $25.

SUNDAY, APR. 5 VS. CHICAGO BLACKHAWKS: "Dispatch/97.1 The Fan Family Night" and appearance by Scooby Doo – The package includes four tickets, four Sugardale hot dogs, four small Pepsi products, four popcorns and four coupons for Wendy's Frostys, UDF ice cream cones and Dispatch Ice Haus skating passes. Prices start as low as $25 per person… In addition, kids can meet "Scooby Doo," presented by Time Warner Cable… "Blue Jackets Pub Hat Trick Combo – This package includes a game ticket, pre-game buffet in the Blue Jackets Pub and a post-game drink... "Rush CBJ Student Tickets presented by Raising Cane's" – High School and College students can get tickets for student prices one hour before games at the Nationwide Arena Ticket Office. Upper bowl seats are just $15, lower bowl seats are just $25.

 


PROMOTIONS & CONTESTS

TIM HORTONS INTRODUCES "STINGER" DONUT:
As the Blue Jackets "March to the Playoffs," team partner Tim Hortons has introduced the Stinger Donut, a specially-themed vanilla dip donut adorned with colorful sprinkles, which is available at all central Ohio Tim Hortons stores through the end of the season. In addition, fans are reminded to celebrate every Jackets home victory with a free donut. The day after a win at Nationwide Arena, fans may show their game ticket at participating central Ohio Tim Hortons stores to receive one free donut with the purchase of a coffee.

BLUEJACKETS ON TWITTER: Fans have a new way to stay updated on all things Blue Jackets by following the team's new Twitter feed. Log onto www.twitter.com/BlueJacketsNHL for the latest team news, promotions, special ticket offers, the March to the Playoffs and more!

JACKETS ALERTS FROM VERIZON WIRELESS: The "Jackets Alerts" program gives fans the opportunity to sign up to have breaking team news, game information and exclusive offers sent directly to their Verizon Wireless phone. By texting the word JACKETS to 79376, fans will be automatically signed up for the 2008-09 season. Standard messaging rates apply and service availability is on a carrier by carrier basis and based on handset compatibility.

FANS – SHOW THE BLUE JACKETS HOW YOU "CARRY THE FLAG": BlueJackets.com is giving fans the opportunity to show how they Carry the Flag! The team's official website is looking for creative content provided by fans about their favorite NHL team. Fans can visit www.BlueJackets.com and submit creative game previews or recaps (pdf, doc, txt), videos (wmv), photos (jpg, jpeg, gif formats no bigger than 1000 x 1000 pixels) or audio clips (mp3 or mpg) and the best submissions will be posted on the team’s website.

 


BLUE JACKETS ON THE RADIO

The Coach's Show with Ken Hitchcock airs on WBNS Sports Radio 97.1 The Fan and AM1460 on Wednesdays from 3 to 4 p.m. with the Jackets Head Coach, FOX Sports Ohio's Jeff Rimer and WBNS Radio's Bruce Hooley… Breakfast with the Blue Jackets can be heard on the Wheeling Island Hotel Casino Radio Network, including flagship station Sports Radio 97.1 The Fan and AM1460 on Sundays from 10 to 11 a.m. with hosts Mark Wyant and members of the Blue Jackets broadcast team.

 


TICKET INFORMATION

SINGLE GAME:
Tickets are on sale now at the Nationwide Arena Ticket Office, FOX Sports Ohio Blue Line Team Stores at the Chiller Easton, Chiller Dublin, Chiller North and The Mall at Tuttle Crossing, all Ticketmaster Ticket Centers, by phone at (800) 745-3000 or online at www.BlueJackets.com and www.ticketmaster.com... SEASON & GROUP TICKETS: For information on season tickets, six-game and 10-game plans, and group tickets, call (614) 246-PUCK or (800) NHL-COLS… HUNTINGTON GREEN SEATS: A minimum of 250 tickets are available for just $10 at the Nationwide Arena Box Office two hours prior to every home game.

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