Projecting How The Columbus Blue Jackets Will Fare The Rest Of The Way

With 34 games remaining, it’s a good time to predict what we expect from the Columbus Blue Jackets the rest of the way and where they’ll end up at the end of the regular season.  Starting with:

 

Ben Jandrain:

 

Record for the final 34 games- (19-13-2)

 

The Blue Jackets will go 2-2-0 in their first four games after the break, but will get back to their winning ways in the next 25-game stretch with a seven-game home stand in the mix going 15-8-2 before losing three of their final five games.

 

Big-Time Performer- Brandon Saad

 

The 24-year old left winger will be the team’s most valuable offensive asset down the final stretch.  He’ll score 15 goals and record 19 assists in the team’s final 34 games, priming himself for Columbus’ third-ever playoff appearance.

 

What The Experts Will Be Saying When The Regular Season’s Over 

 

After Sergei Bobrovsky continues to play at a high level and the power play remains the most lethal one in the National Hockey League, experts will be contradicting one another:

 

On one hand, some will emphasize that Columbus has a hot goaltender and four consistent lines who can step up on any night.

 

On the contrary, some will talk about the overall lack of playoff experience for the club and that they’re not ready for the moment.

 

Only time will tell.

 

Final points and place in the standings– 108 points (Second Place in the Metropolitan Division).

 

The Blue Jackets will finish with only one more point than the Pittsburgh Penguins and have home-ice advantage against them in the first round of the Stanley Cup Playoffs thanks to winning two of their three matchups with them this season.

 

 

Drew Minnehan:

 

Record for the final 34 games- (17-14-3)

 

I’m a believer in the thought that things are never as good as they seem, nor are they as bad as they seem.  Are the Jackets the world-beaters we saw during the 16-game winning streak?  No.  Are they the team we’ve seen since then that’s struggling to go .500?  No.  They’re a good team that appears set to make the playoffs for the third time in franchise history by playing solid hockey after the All Star break.

 

Big-Time Performer- Boone Jenner

 

Boone Jenner has had a disappointing season to date after a break-out campaign last year.  With 30 goals a year ago, the 23-year-old has only scored nine times this season.  The kind of play that has been missing from the CBJ the last few weeks: getting in the tough areas, screening goaltenders, playing a tough game to get good scoring chances – that’s the kind of skill set he has, so expect big things from Boone Jenner down the stretch.

 

What The Experts Will Be Saying When The Regular Season’s Over 

 

After experiencing the kind of success this team’s had, especially coming into a season where expectations were so low, this could be the year the Columbus Blue Jackets advance in the playoffs.  They’re a young team, so playoff experience will be a question mark entering the postseason, but their youth end energy could play into their favor at the same time.

 

The scary part is: with all the high draft picks still working their way up to the NHL, this could be the beginning of an extended run for the CBJ to be playoff contenders for several years to come.

 

Final points and place in the standings– 105 points (Fourth Place in the Metropolitan Division).

 

The Blue Jackets are playing in the toughest division in hockey.  With perennial contenders like the Washington Capitals, Pittsburgh Penguins, and New York Rangers in the mix, the Jackets will fall slightly, finishing fourth in the division just one point behind the Rangers.  This would set up a first round matchup with the Montreal Canadiens in the Stanley Cup Playoffs.

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I have an obsessive fascination with sports, craft beer and food. As an entrepreneur, I'm excited to be in a city full of people who are starting up businesses and creating new brands. I decided instead of moving somewhere else, I'd stay here in Columbus, Ohio and start a website that embraces what the 614 has to offer.

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