Good morning! It's game day!
Believe it or not, I'm excited about that - with luck, this team will be showing positive changes after four days of practice, and looking to give the home fans something to get the bitterness out of their mouths.
Want something to help you get pumped up? How about a Mark Letestu highlight reel? (Stick tap to Rob Mixer for pointing this out on Twitter.)
Around the NHL, we had some strangeness in the Lightning / Flyers game, and I find it interesting that the pundits blamed the Lighting for using the defensive scheme rather than the Flyers for throwing a tantrum and refusing to skate.
Speaking of the Jackets new acquisition, there's a nice look in Puck-Rakers about the former Penguin looking for a fresh start.
Brent Burns is kind of bitter about his old team.
Something I missed the other day: Lori Schmidt did some hockey math, and there are a lot of Jackets who were expected to step up, and instead have done the opposite.
Bruce Boudreau tried to send a message to the Capitals with a bag skate after a 5-2 loss on home ice (a tactic whose effectiveness Bourne finds debatable over at BHS), but it sounds like they're a little busy thinking about cars.
A few more Dispatch goodies for you (if that's the proper word, given some of the vitriol within) - the transcript of their latest live chat and discussion on the bench and within the locker room about bringing more pride to the rink.
We've got a brace of blogs at DBJ, one focusing on a HuffPo report claiming the team was "ready for financial collapse", and making a point that sports economics are not business economics and questioning if the team's supposed transformation to more "Hitch-like" hockey is going to be effective. Initial signs point to yes, but I'd also point out that until we see the team play a game, judging any changes to the system is premature.
At Puck Daddy, there was some media sizzle for last night's Predators / Ducks game, Comedian / Shock Jock Artie Lang does a pretty good Don Cherry impression, Braydon Coburn got paid, they look at the Blackhawks dealing with the worst PP in the NHL (and, yes, more than a few wags have suggested it could be fixed by playing the Jackets tonight) and an interview with the "How to Pronounce Hockey Names" guy who has been so popular on Youtube. (Has anyone noticed the voice he uses for these sounds like Marvin the Martian?)
The last word goes to another well written reaction by Jeff Little, who attempts to sort out the recent news.
Well...maybe not the last word. Take it away, boys.