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Game #67 Preview/Gamethread: Blue Jackets march forward against Vancouver

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Here’s what you need to know

Vancouver Canucks v Columbus Blue Jackets Photo by Jamie Sabau/NHLI via Getty Images

Sunday, March, 2020 - 7:00 EST
Nationwide Arena - Columbus, Ohio
TV: Fox Sports Ohio; Radio: 97.1 FM
Opponent’s Blog: Nucks Misconduct

Vancouver Canucks (34-24-6, 74 points, 3rd Pacific, 6th West)

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Columbus Blue Jackets (31-21-14, 76 points, 5th Metro, 8th East)

It’s a big day in Columbus sports, with the Crew hosting their season opener, then Ohio State men’s basketball hosting a big rivalry game against Michigan, and finally a Blue Jackets home game, their last before a Western Canada road trip.

Player to Watch

Quinn Hughes

I’ve kept an eye on this young man’s career since I profiled him before the 2018 draft. He’s having a splashy rookie season much like fellow Wolverine Zach Werenski did. Hughes is on pace to set not just franchise records, but league records for rookie defensemen. He is producing at a point per game pace in 2020 and nearly half of his points on the season have come on the power play.

Check out this highlight video from our friends at Nucks Misconduct:

Jackets Notes

Ryan Murray is back! That is a huge boost for a team that has struggled defensively in Seth Jones’ absence. He’ll be paired up with his old partner Markus Nutivaara ... I don’t know that I like breaking up Gavrikov and Savard, but Gavrikov has not played as well lately, and as long as Harrington is scratched, that’s addition by subtraction ... Ryan MacInnis was recalled from Cleveland.

The Other Bench

In a rare gift from the scheduling gods, the Jackets are playing at home after an off day against a Vancouver team finishing a stretch of four out of six games on the road ... The Canucks lost last night in Toronto, two nights after losing at Ottawa ... This will likely be the Canucks debut of goalie Louis Domingue. Lead goalie Jacob Markstrom is out for a few weeks with a lower body injury, so Domingue was acquired from the Devils’ AHL team at the deadline.

Season Series

03/01/20 VAN @ CBJ
03/08/20 CBJ @ VAN

Stats

Vancouver Columbus
3.25 (9) GPG 2.58 (27)
3.06 (15) GAPG 2.61 (4)
24.3% (3) PP% 16.0% (26)
80.7% (15) PK% 81.4% (13)
48.4% (22) 5v5 Shot Attempt % 49.1% (18)
49.0% (20) 5v5 Unblocked shot attempt % 50.9% (13)
8.5 (12) 5v5 Shot % 6.8 (29)
.920 (14) 5v5 Save % .928 (5)
J.T. Miller and Elias Petersson, 25 G Leader Oliver BJORKSTRAND, 21
Quinn Hughes, 43 A Leader Pierre-Luc Dubois, 28
J.T. Miller 65 P Leader Pierre-Luc Dubois, 46
Alexander Edler PIM Leader Nick Foligno, 62
14-17-2 Home / Road 19-12-4
4-5-1 Last 10 1-4-5

Projected Lineups

Columbus Blue Jackets
Gus Nyquist Boone Jenner Nick Foligno
Stefan Matteau Alexander Wennberg Riley Nash
Devin Shore Pierre-Luc Dubois Emil Bemstrom
Eric Robinson Kevin Stenlund Ryan MacInnis
Zach Werenski David Savard
Ryan Murray Markus Nutivaara
Vladislav Gavrikov Andrew Peeke
Joonas Korpisalo
Matiss Kivlenieks
Vancouver Canucks
Elias Pettersson J.T. Miller Tyler Toffoli
Loui Eriksson Bo Horvat Tanner Pearson
Tyler Motte Jay Beagle Brandon Sutter
Antoine Roussel Adam Gaudette Jake Virtanen
Quinn Hughes Chris Tanev
Oscar Fantenberg Tyler Myers
Alexander Edler Troy Stecher
Louis Domingue
Thatcher Demko