Well, shit. The Jackets won eight games in a row, and I'll be frank: tonight's game feels like a chance for all of that to slip away. They let the Canes pass them up both on the scoreboard and in the standings last night. Losing three games in four days would certainly put a huge smudge on the winning streak, especially with just six games before the break, three of which are on the road out West.
Worse still, they were knocked out of a playoff spot, both in the Metro and in the Wild Card race. They need to take back what's theirs tonight.
The Senators are on a bit of a rollercoaster themselves, as after winning six of seven (6-0-1), they've won just once in their last five (1-2-2). They've allowed 18 goals over that span, which is, how you say, not good. And that includes shutting out the Caps for their one win. So, in the four losses, they've allowed 18 goals.
And so, there it is. That's how the Jackets can win this game. They need to recapture the scoring streak they were on during their winning streak. They were slow last night, and were unable to generate basically any offense for the final two frames until it was too late. After dominating Buffalo and losing, they were clearly outplayed last night and still almost stole a win. It's a bit of a head-scratcher, for sure.
Curtis McElhinney gets the nod in goal tonight, and Blake Comeau returns to the lineup in place of Corey Tropp. On defense, David Savard is still out, and the pairings from last night remain the same.
Ultimately, however, the Jackets need to re-establish their forecheck, they need to create scoring chances, and they need to start burying them again. They were hitting all of those chances during the streak, and getting stoned in the two losses since. The Sens are struggling to keep the puck out of their net, and the Jackets need to capitalize on that.
Columbus Blue Jackets
(26-22-4, 56 Points; 4th division, 9th conference)
|Nick Foligno||Ryan Johansen||R.J. Umberger|
|Matt Calvert||Brandon Dubinsky||Cam Atkinson|
|Boone Jenner||Artem Anisimov||Nathan Horton|
|Derek MacKenzie||Mark Letestu||Blake Comeau|
|Fedor Tyutin||Jack Johnson|
|Ryan Murray||James Wisniewski|
|Nikita Nikitin||Cody Goloubef|
(22-20-10, 54 Points; 6th division, 12th conference)
|Colin Greening||Jason Spezza||Erik Condra|
|Clarke MacArthur||Kyle Turris||Bobby Ryan|
|Cory Conacher||Mika Zibanejad||Milan Michalek|
|Zack Smith||Stephane Da Costa||Chris Neil|
|Jared Cowen||Erik Karlsson|
|Chris Phillips||Cody Ceci|
|Marc Methot||Eric Gryba|
Head to Head Stats
Ottawa Columbus 2.79 (12) GPG 2.85 (10) 3.06 (27) GAPG 2.83 (18) 19.4% (11) PP% 18.6% (16) 80.2% (21) PK% 80.7% (18) Bobby Ryan, 19 G leader Ryan Johansen, 19 Erik Karlsson, 37 A leader James Wisniewski, 27 Erik Karlsson, 49 Pts leader Ryan Johansen, 38 Chris Neil, 108 PIM leader Brandon Dubinsky, 78 11-9-5 Road/Home 14-10-2 1/25 @ Carolina, L 6-3 Last Game 1/27 @ Carolina, L 3-2 5-2-3 Last 10 8-2-0