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Cannon Blasts: Who is Gavrikov calling?

That and more of this week’s links

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Columbus Blue Jackets v New York Islanders Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images

Columbus Blue Jackets rookie defenseman Vladislav Gavrikov scored his fifth goal of the season on Sunday, and once again performed what has become a trademark celebration: making a “call me” signal.

What is the origin of this? Who is he telling to call him? Gavy has so far been coy about this, telling FoxSports Ohio’s Dave Maetzold during the intermission break that he would tell him next time. Until then, here are some theories I have about who is on the other end of his phone call:

  • His wife.
  • His parents.
  • Vladimir Putin.
  • His agent, to discuss the raise he’ll get this summer.
  • Jean-Luc Grand-Pierre, to see if Sergei Bobrovsky’s condo is still on the market.
  • His countrymen Bobrovsky and Panarin, to ask why they would leave a playoff team for a non-playoff team.
  • Papa John’s, to place a delivery order for a Foligno’s Favorite.

Any other suggestions? Let us know in the comments.

The week that was

Game #52: BUF 2 CBJ 1 (OT)
Game #53: CBJ 4 MTL 3

It’s one thing to come back from the break with a road back-to-back, but for both games to be early afternoon starts? So weird. The Jackets started slow in each but did what they had to do to earn three points. And just like that, they passed the Islanders for third place in the Metro:

While the team was off, we at the Cannon remained busy:

MrSwift set out to write a favorable article about Boone Jenner, then was surprised that his defensive numbers don’t match the conventional wisdom regarding his role. Should he play more on an offensive line? Will his role change at all with a looming absence of Alexander Wennberg (who left Sunday’s game with an upper-body injury)?

Will ran down a list of milestones and records which could be achieved yet this season.

If you don’t subscribe to the SpecmenceCBJ YouTube channel, you owe it to yourself as a Jackets fan to do so. Ryan interviewed him to find out why he’s a Jackets fan and what programs he uses to edit those videos so quickly.

Yours truly reviewed the month of January. Spoiler: it was a good month.

We were fortunate to have another special guest on the Cannon Cast: the Jackets Insider himself, Jeff Svoboda. It’s neat to listen to Jeff’s path to that job, and what it’s like to have that behind-the-scenes access to covering the team.

On deck

Tuesday: vs. Florida
Friday: vs. Detroit
Saturday: vs. Colorado

The Jackets return to Columbus this week for the start of a four game homestand, including a rare home back-to-back over the weekend.

Also this weekend, Columbus plays host to its inaugural Hockey Analytics Conference. I’ll be there on Saturday and will be writing a recap in this space next week. I’m looking forward to meeting other SBN hockey writers and learning about new ways of looking at the game of hockey. That’s the important thing to keep in my mind about analytics: it’s not just compiling a bunch of numbers, it’s about building a process of evaluation that incorporates both the eye test and the advanced statistics. Your observations tell you which stats to collect, to either confirm what you saw or reveal something you missed. On the flip side, when looking at the metrics, most should fit your perception, and the part that differs gives you something new to look at in more detail.

SPECIAL OFFER FOR CANNON READERS: Use this link to purchase tickets for Friday’s game on StubHub. (Vox Media has affiliate partnerships. These do not influence editorial content, though Vox Media may earn commissions for products purchased via affiliate links.)

Monsters Mash

Another up and down weekend for the Monsters against the Utica Comets, with a shutout loss on Friday followed by a gritty win on Saturday.

National Sports Update

Congratulations to the Kansas City Chiefs for defeating the San Francisco 49ers to win Super Bowl LIV. Here is the immediate reaction from SBN’s Chiefs blog. I’m happy to see Andy Reid finally win a title as head coach, and I found the game to be a very enjoyable back-and-forth affair.

Play me out

The Super Bowl halftime show featuring Jennifer Lopez and Shakira was good, but they should have used a true Miami music legend (who elpalito and I reminisced about in our Slack channel earlier in the week):