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Game Preview #43 - Salvage Some Dignity

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The Jackets went with a whimper last night. Those wins against Dallas and Washington seem so, so long ago.

Russell LaBounty-USA TODAY Sports

Blue Jackets vs. Hurricanes
7:00 PM -
Game Faceoff

"I don't think we played near hard enough, desperate enough. We took some penalties... we had a good start, but we lost the momentum and never really got it back. [It] just wasn't intense enough, and we didn't play well enough. We've gotta be a hell of a lot better."

--Brandon Dubinsky

That seems to be a fair assessment, at least to my eyes. I will spare you the time spent breaking down this matchup. You saw it last night. The Jackets ended up with a decent enough shot total, but never really threatened Cam Ward at all. Their lone goal came on a 5-on-3 Power Play, and they needed it to go in off the skate of a Hurricanes player. They wasted another 90 seconds of 5-on-3 later in the game.

Of course, more bad news (did we need more, really?) as Nick Foligno heads to IR after taking a head shot last night. The club, of course, calls it "upper body" but I think we can fairly speculate based on him laying in a heap and then needing help to get up and to the bench that it's probably a concussion. No word yet on whether Brad Malone will get supplementary discipline. Kerby Rychel gets the recall.

For what it's worth, I thought Seth Jones was decent enough in his debut. To come in and be asked to play top pairing minutes knowing literally none of your teammates... he had an "average" game. Per war-on-ice, he had an EV net Corsi of zero, meaning he was on the ice for the same number of shot attempts for as against at even strength. The teams were pretty even at EV, as well (41-40 in favor of Carolina), so for Jones to not stick out was... good enough. He wasn't great, but he was good enough. Certainly better than Dalton Prout would have been, would be my guess. He made a couple of slick exit passes, too, which made me happy, and he looked comfortable with Murray. There's plenty to clean up as he gets acclimated, but it was a pretty solid debut all things considered.

My gut says Korpisalo gets the start in net, though if you believe Jeff Rimer there are rumblings Bobrovsky could go. Why bother, I say. Let the kids play. If we can't beat a mediocre (and I'm not trying to be a jerk, here; they are what their record says they are just like the Jackets are) Hurricanes team--and frankly don't even look like we're trying to--then chalk this season up to the tank and give yourself the best chance to get Auston Matthews while letting some young guys cut their teeth and learn The Torts WayTM.

I think stinerman mentioned in the Faceoff comments that there is a Cannon meet-up during the second intermission at The Cannon outside section 111. I'll let him fill in any more details below.

Projected Lineups

Columbus Blue Jackets
(15-24-3, 33 Points; 8th division, 16th conference)

Boone Jenner Brandon Dubinsky Cam Atkinson
Scott Hartnell Alexander Wennberg Brandon Saad
Kerby Rychel William Karlsson Josh Anderson
Rene Bourque Gregory Campbell Jared Boll
Ryan Murray Seth Jones
Jack Johnson David Savard
Fedor Tyutin Cody Goloubef
Joonas Korpisalo
Anton Forsberg

Carolina Hurricanes
(17-18-7, 41 Points; 7th Division, 13th Conference)

Eric Staal Jordan Staal Kris Versteeg
Joakim Nordstrom Victor Rask Elias Lindholm
Jeff Skinner Riley Nash Chris Terry
Brad Malone Jay McClement Andrej Nestrasil
Jaccob Slavin Justin Faulk
John-Michael Liles Ron Hainsey
Noah Hanifin Brett Pesce
Cam Ward
Eddie Lack