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Game #55 Preview: Blue Jackets kick off important weekend back-to-back by hosting Kings

Here’s what you need to know.

Columbus Blue Jackets v Los Angeles Kings Photo by Juan Ocampo/NHLI via Getty Images

Los Angeles Kings at Columbus Blue Jackets
Friday, March 4, 2022 - 7:00 EDT
Nationwide Arena, Columbus, OH
TV: Bally’s Sports Ohio - Radio: WBNS FM
Opponent’s Blog: Jewels From The Crown

Los Angeles Kings, 29-19-7, 65 points, 2nd Pacific, 5th West
@
Columbus Blue Jackets, 28-25-1, 57 points, 5th Metro, 9th East

The Columbus Blue Jackets will welcome the Los Angeles Kings to Nationwide Arena for the first time since December 19, 2019 tonight - that game, for those who forget, was a 3-2 OT victory for the home team as they swept the season series with the Kings.

These Kings are improved over the 2019-20 squad, with the 2021-22 Kings sitting squarely in a playoff position as we approach the trade deadline. The Blue Jackets are in the first spot outside the Eastern Conference Wild Card right now, but with significant ground to make up to even have a hope of making the playoffs.

The Blue Jackets could see some reinforcements return to the lineup tonight. Zach Werenski, Eric Robinson, and Jake Bean skated at practice on Thursday, while Joonas Korpisalo joined Elvis Merzlikins and J-F Berube in goalie drills. Adam Boqvist did not participate.

Player to Watch

Jack Roslovic

Roslovic has had a much more productive stretch of late with five points in his last four games, including two two-point nights. Roslovic has been struggling this season, with just 25 points total on the season (9-16-25), but has found his sea legs and is earning more playing time as a result. His time on ice per game has ticked upward over the four contests and he is even finding himself on the penalty kill. His CF% is over 50% and, while he is still playing sheltered minutes, he has been effective for the club.

Jackets Notes

Jake Christiansen notched his first career goal during the game on Tuesday … With an assist on Christiansen’s goal, Max Domi crossed the 300 point plateau for his career … Patrik Laine has 14 goals and 23 points in his last 14 games, a Blue Jackets record … the Blue Jackets are the only team in the Eastern Conference with a points percentage above .500 despite a negative goal differential on the season … Vladislav Gavrikov has nine minor penalties in his last eight games to lead the club in PIMs this season with 40

The Other Bench

The Kings came up just short of tying the NHL record for most consecutive games outshooting their opponent with their streak snapped at 21 in Wednesday’s loss to the Dallas Stars (the record is 22 consecutive games) … Phillip Danault has eight points (6-2-8) in his last nine games … the Kings allowed three goals in 5:34 of the second period to lose to the Stars on Wednesday night

Season Series

03/04/2022 LAK @ CBJ
04/16/2022 CBJ @ LAK

Stats

Los Angeles Columbus
2.91 (19) GPG 3.26 (10)
2.82(12) GAPG 3.61 (31)
16.8% (26) PP% 17.2% (24)
75.3% (29) PK% 80.3% (13)
54.43% (4) 5v5 Shot Attempt % 47.42% (25)
55.06% (3) 5v5 Unblocked shot attempt % 46.81% (27)
7.04% (29) 5v5 Shooting % 9.56% (4)
.921 (14) 5v5 Save % .907 (29)
Adrian Kempe, 25 G Leader Boone Jenner, 23
Anze Kopitar, 35 A Leader Jakub Voracek, 38
Anze Kopitar, 50 P Leader Boone Jenner, 43
Brendan Lemieux, 86 PIM Leader Vladislav Gavrikov, 40
8-16-2 Home / Road 15-7-5
7-3-0 Last 10 7-3-0

Projected Lineups

Columbus Blue Jackets

Patrik Laine Boone Jenner Gus Nyquist
Jakub Voracek Jack Roslovic Oliver Bjorkstrand
Max Domi Cole Sillinger Emil Bemstrom
Yegor Chinakhov Sean Kuraly Justin Danforth
Zach Werenski Andrew Peeke
Dean Kukan Vladislav Gavrikov
Gavin Bayreuther Gabriel Carlsson
Elvis Merzlikins
Jean-Francois Berube

Los Angeles Kings

Alex Iafallo Anze Kopitar Adrian Kempe
Trevor Moore Phillip Danault Viktor Arvidsson
Carl Grundstrom Quinton Byfield Dustin Brown
Brendan Lemieux Blake Lizotte Arthur Kaliyev
Mikey Anderson Drew Doughty
Olli Maatta Matt Roy
Tobias Bjornfot Sean Durzi
Cal Petersen
Jonathan Quick