After losing their last two games at Nationwide Arena by respective scores of 9-6 to the Calgary Flames and 4-0 to the Washington Capitals, the Columbus Blue Jackets (16-11-2) will look to put together solid performance tonight when they host the Vancouver Canucks (16-13-3).
The CBJ should be playing with a sense of urgency tonight in front of their home fans after what transpired a week ago, but don’t sleep on Vancouver. The Canucks are coming off a 6-1 victory over the Blues in St. Louis on Sunday night and will be trying to win their third consecutive game tonight. This is all happening despite losing 12 of their previous 14 games before winning their last two.
Columbus, on the other hand, has gotten off to a solid start, but is trying to avoid getting into a rut after a chaotic week when both the offense and defense struggled mightily at times.
While the main storyline for tonight is the Jackets trying to get things rolling on home ice, it’s worth noting that the top-five players for the Canucks as far as points this season are all 23-years old or younger. That could be a positive for Columbus, considering they’re going against a team relying heavily on youngsters, or, it could be a negative, with Vancouver being loaded with young talent that’s finding their groove.
Whoever ends up in net for Columbus, it won’t change the fact that the defense needs to allow fewer odd-man rushes and the offense needs to improve on the power play (a combined 0-9 in their last two games on the man advantage).
It should be quite an entertaining and interesting matchup tonight in Columbus, Ohio.