The Blasts are back, everyone, and with a rare gameday edition as well! The CBJ have four games left before the All-Star break. They host the Flames tonight and then travel to Boston for a game on Saturday. They'll finish off January with a home-and-home against the Canadiens this coming Monday and Tuesday. 35 more games to go, folks.
Now to the reading material / links:
- There is a lot happening for the fans. Let's get you caught up. First, Winter Park opens tomorrow in downtown Columbus just across from Nationwide Arena. The team has an 11:00 a.m. practice scheduled and then it will open up to the public after that. It will be a similar setup to last year's outdoor rink and will be open through February 21. Admission is $5 and you can find the schedule here. There will also be live bands every weekend. The 5th Line 5k is this Saturday and there's still a few spots open if you haven't registered. Temperatures are finally cooperating for the outdoor rink, although I think everyone is a little sad the massive slide is not making its return down Nationwide Blvd. Still, there will be even more to enjoy in the Arena District this winter.
- Also not related to on-ice events, John Tortorella is looking for someone to adopt Booker, a five-year old rescued pit bull. #SaveBooker (who knows, he may be adopted by now)
- Don't look now, but Oliver Bjorkstrand is heating up since his return from injury. The Great Dane has four goals in his last three games.
- James Mirtle discusses the complexities of the U.S./Canada exchange rate. Of note, "According to deputy commissioner Bill Daly, the league hasn’t recalculated where the cap might end up next season based on the dollar’s shift. It’s safe to say, however, that it’s unlikely to get anywhere close to the rosy $74.5-million figure they forecast to the board of governors in December." (emphasis added by me)
- John Scott is an All-Star. The All-Star Game could be the last NHL game of his career, as Mary Clarke notes.
- The drama continues for Jonathan Drouin in Tampa Bay. Errr, Syracuse. Wait, no, not Syracuse.
- Not a surprise here - no Jackets appear on the midseason awards watch list. Patrick Kane is on pace for a ridiculous 126 points and the Blackhawks have won 12 straight (what's that like? *sigh*).
- The Blue Jackets Dads will be joining the team on the upcoming road trip to Boston as well as playing a hockey game for charity. *Stick taps*
- From Overtime Sports Nation - Breaking Down the Blue Jackets.
- This was posted in the comments of a post this week, but reading between the lines...Fedor Tyutin does not sound happy.
- If you want to look forward to the draft, here's a guy flying under the radar in the top 10. Hint: stay tuned for Mike's upcoming mock draft!
- Preds GM David Poile discusses hosting the All-Star Game as well as the Johansen/Jones trade with NHL.com's Dan Rosen. Johansen has 2-5-7 in his 6 games with Nashville so far to go along with an even +/- rating and 6 PIM. The team has not seen the results they've wanted though, as they have gone just 1-4-1 since the trade. Meanwhile, the Jackets are 2-2-1 with Seth Jones in the lineup. He has 4 assists in the last 3 games and a +4 rating in those contests as well. If the guy can start putting a few in the back of the net (shooting 1.2% this season)...look out.
- Dancing Kevin has a new goal to slim down and lose weight. *More stick taps*
- Lastly, I just wanted to highlight a couple of fanposts we haven't pinned to the front page. FoxTrotUniformCharlieKilo wants to talk to you about, well, anything. TV Shows (Making a Murderer for me)? Music? Books? Other Sports? Start the conversation. FFMorgan89 posted his thoughts about how we all need to R-E-L-A-X.