Game Preview #75 - Hey Look! We Know That Guy!

x2. Well, x3, really, because our own Mike MacLean is at tonight's game!

Blue Jackets at Predators - 7:00 PM
Game Faceoff

First things first... if you're following Werenski Watch, Michigan edged Notre Dame last night in OT to advance to the second round of the NCAA tournament. Werenski had the game-tying goal to force overtime. They face regional top seed North Dakota tonight at 6:00 EDT. Game is on ESPN2.

Second things second... if you find yourself at this game in Nashville, you should know that blog Capo Regime Mike MacLean has made the road trip from grand old Halifax, Nova Scotia to take in only his second in-person CBJ game ever. If you're there, let us know in the comments so Mike can find ya.

Third things third... so, hey. Wonder if anyone's had this game circled since early January. I'll be Ryan Johansen has. If you haven't yet, check out Porty's QA series with Johansen, Seth Jones, and John Tortorella, Nick Foligno, David Poile, etc., do check it out. The trade has seemingly worked out well--at least according to its intentions--for both clubs. Johansen has 7/18/25 in 34 games in Nashville, and Jones has slid in as the de facto #1 defenseman for Columbus at the age of 21, and other than perhaps wearing down here at the end of the season, has looked every bit the play he was projected to be in his draft year.

But, Johansen is saying all the right things, at least:

I wish we didn’t start the season 0-8. I wish we were in the playoffs. I wish we had a great year. I wish we were all still together. But that’s professional sports. It happens, and when a team struggles there are trades. Maybe I felt like it wouldn’t be me that’s going (to get traded), but it was. I loved more than anything else in the world being a Blue Jacket. But now I’m here. And since they didn’t believe that I could be a big piece of the franchise in Columbus any more, I love being a Nashville Predator. I’ve come here with all new, great teammates, a first-class organization, like every team in the NHL. I’m a Predator now, and that’s all that matters. Yes, Columbus will have a special place in my heart for the rest of my life. I have so many great memories. I’m proud that I was a Blue Jacket. It’s too bad we had the year we did, because there’s so many great people in that dressing room, great playersI know I often get accused of being a shill for this FO, but man... with each passing day, it gets harder and harder. That's not to say Jones won't be a great Blue Jackets for the next 12 years or more. It's just sad that it had to go down like this. I'll always feel that way.

About this game... well... one team needs it, the other is playing purely for pride or spite or whatever. It looks like Korpi is going to get a start in net tonight, which I think will be good for him as he prepares to play in the AHL playoffs. Dean Kukan is making his NHL debut tonight on defense.

The Jackets' struggles in Nashville are legendary. The Jackets are playing out the string. Nashville is desperate for points the rest of the way.

So, naturally, Jackets win 5-1, amirite???

Projected Lineups

Columbus Blue Jackets
(30-36-8, 68 Points; 8th division, 15th conference)

Matt Calvert Brandon Dubinsky Cam Atkinson
Brandon Saad Boone Jenner BJORKSTRAND
Scott Hartnell Alexander Wennberg Nick Foligno
William Karlsson Michael Chaput Gregory Campbell
Ryan Murray Seth Jones
Dalton Prout David Savard
Dean Kukan Cody Goloubef
Joonas Korpisalo
Sergei Bobrovsky

Nashville Predators
(38-23-13, 89 Points - 4th Division, 6th Conference)

Calle Jarnkrok Ryan Johansen James Neal
Filip Forsberg Mike Ribeiro Craig Smith
Colin Wilson Mike Fisher Viktor Arvidsson
Eric Nystrom Colton Sissons Miikka Salomaki
Roman Josi Shea Weber
Barret Jackman Ryan Ellis
Mattias Ekholm Petter Granberg
Pekka Rinne
Carter Hutton

Subscribe to The Cannon

Don’t miss out on the latest articles. Sign up now to get access to the library of members-only articles.