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Game #5 Preview: Columbus Blue Jackets need to rock the Hurricanes

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Let’s just pretend the first four didn’t happen.

NHL: Columbus Blue Jackets at Carolina Hurricanes James Guillory-USA TODAY Sports

Saturday, October 12, 2019 — 7 p.m. EST
PNC Arena, Raleigh, North Carolina
TV: Fox Sports Ohio; Radio: 97.1 FM

Opponent’s Blog: Canes Country

Carolina Hurricanes (5-0-0, 1st Metro, 1st Eastern)

vs.

Columbus Blue Jackets (1-3-0, 7th Metro, 14th Eastern)

The Hurricanes are off to a historic start to their season — for the first time in franchise history, they’re 5-0-0 at the beginning of the season, one of four NHL teams able to claim that stat right now — and the Blue Jackets are off to a slow start, to say the least. Momentum is not in our favor as the teams meet tomorrow night in Raleigh, but the Jackets need only make some tweaks if they want to start producing offensively.

The Jackets had a sloppy loss last night to Anaheim that included lots of dinged posts and almost-goals — despite a strong showing on defense, the game was defined by the Jackets inability to finish on the chances they created. That’s not going to cut it against the fast-paced game the Hurricanes will create; at 38.0 shots per game, they’re second in the NHL in that regard.

Player(s) to Watch

Boone & Bjorky

Each are within reach of career milestones tonight — Oliver Bjorkstrand is two points away from 100 in his career, while Boone Jenner is one point away from 200. Those points would come in handy tonight, and would redeem Boone’s wacky shot from last night’s game... if you don’t know what I’m talking about, check Twitter. Or don’t. It wasn’t pretty.

Jackets Notes

Josh Anderson is still day-to-day, Joonas Korpisalo is looking more solid and sure by the game, and Pierre-Luc Dubois had a significant night last night, netting his first goal of the season and winning 7 of 11 face-offs. Again, the defense can look their best but the team won’t start winning regularly until they can figure out how to click offensively. There’s a Panarin-shaped hole in their offense; the team was used to having someone make up for messy passing and errant shots and turn them into offensive opportunities. All of the pieces are still there — the Jackets just need to figure out how to use them correctly.

The Other Bench

The Hurricanes average 4.2 goals per game to the Jackets’ 2.0, so matching Carolina’s pace will be necessary right off the bat — not something the Jackets are going to be able to decide to do in a final push in the third period — they’ll be way in the hole at that point. The Jackets will need to be on high-alert for Andrei Svechnikov, who is leading the team in points right now, as well as Teuvo Teravainen and former CBJ forward Ryan Dzingel.

Season Series

10/12/2019 CBJ @ CAR

10/24/2019 CAR @ CBJ

1/16/2020 CAR @ CBJ

4/3/2020 CBJ @ CAR

Stats

Carolina Columbus
4.20 (4) GPG 2.00 (12)
2.60 (20) GAPG 4.00 (11)
29.4% (8) PP% 25% (28)
75% (16) PK% 64.3% (1)
56.87% (8) 5v5 Corsi % 50.96% (12)
57.50% (14) 5v5 Fenwick % 53.71% (11)
6.2 (3) 5v5 Shot % 3.3 (6)
.949 (7) 5v5 Save % .888 (22)
Erik Haula, 4 G Leader Cam Atkinson, 2
Andrei Svechnikov, 7 A Leader Nick Foligno, 2
Andrei Svechnikov, 8 P Leader Nick Foligno, 3
Andrei Svechnikov, 6 PIM Leader Pierre-Luc Dubois, 5
2-3-0 Home / Road 1-0-0
5-0-0 Last 10 1-3-0

Projected Lineups

Columbus Blue Jackets
Gustav Nyquist Pierre-Luc Dubois Cam Atkinson
Alexandre Texier Alexander Wennberg Oliver BJORKSTRAND
Nick Foligno Boone Jenner Emil Bemstrom
Jakob Lilja Riley Nash Sonny Milano
Zach Werenski Seth Jones
Ryan Murray Markus Nutivaara
Vladislav Gavrikov David Savard
Joonas Korpisalo
Elvis Merzlikins
Carolina Hurricanes
Andrei Svechnikov Jordan Staal Brock McGinn
Nino Niederreiter Sebastian Aho Teuvo Teravainen
Ryan Dzingel Erik Haula Martin Necas
Warren Foegele Lucas Wallmark Julien Gauthier
Jaccob Slavin Dougie Hamilton
Joel Edmundson Brett Pesce
Jake Gardiner Haydn Fleury
Petr Mrazek
James Reimer