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Blue Jackets Links

Pre-season game #1: Blue Jackets vs. Predators

Sunday, September 16, 2007
You know what's been awesome about this weekend? The weather. The past two days have been perfect pre-season hockey weather. Waking up to low- to mid-40 degree mornings, and the temperature for the day only peaking around the mid- to upper-60s. Frankly, I thrive off of cold weather. Muggy, humid weather ... and anything over 80 degrees makes me disgustingly uncomfortable in my skin. The wait for the first pre-season game has been far too long, and five months between last regular season game of the 2006-07 campaign and now has been torture.

The late afternoon match-up against the gutted Nashville Predators should certainly be interesting, if only because I would expect the Predators to be coming out with a whole assortment of prospects they would like to get a good look at, what with the dismantling they went through during this off-season. The Preds have honestly been through Hell thanks to the ownership issues plaguing the team right up to this very moment, and while I'm certainly not about to show any sympathy towards the team itself after the heaping amount of embarrassment they piled on top of the Blue Jackets last season (0-7-1), I can certainly show sympathy towards their fans.

And no, I'm not going to make any cracks such as "All five of their fans" or something lame. Moving along.

Their new team captain, it was revealed in the past few days, is former Devils' E-A-S-y line guy Jason Arnott (IPB might be the only bloggers I know who'd even recall that line). The memories I have of Arnott are only from my time back in New Jersey, when he, Patrik Elias, and Petr Sykora led a then-dominant Devils team to the Stanley Cup in 2000, as well as a seven game Stanley Cup Finals in 2001.

But those are some damn old memories. Either way, the best of luck to Arnott in Nashville as the team's captain; he's going to need it to rally that team, after losing quite a few key parts.

Meanwhile, over in Blue Jackets' camp, expect to see some fresh faces and prospects out on the ice tonight, as reported by The Dispatch. In all, just about half of the forwards have little to no NHL experience, while on the defensive end you have maybe two out of six players with limited experience.

Between the pipes, you're going to have Pascal Leclaire looking to get a quick start out of the gate to prove that he isn't just an injury-prone yet talented netminder, with Tomas Popperle trying to show that his poor showing at the Traverse City Prospects Tourny was merely a fluke. So a lot of players with a lot to prove.

Be sure to keep an eye out for the Rick Nash, Nikolai Zherdev, David Vyborny line tonight. It'll be exciting to see how they do when they're up against players not on the same team as they are, even if it's just a pre-season game.

What I'll be looking for when I go down to Nationwide and watch the game tonight? Besides the NZV Line, and my own personal hopes that Pazzy comes out stronger than ever, I want to see just how well Geoff Platt does. Lost in the logjam that is the center position now that Zherdev may be making a transition there, the stature-challenged but super-gigawatt charged Platt needs to do something -- and something amazing -- this pre-season if he wants to stay up here instead of going back to the 'Cuse again. Here's hoping for the best.

And with that, I am off to start my exercise regime at the fitness center! I found out the hard way last week that a personal trainer over four months would cost something like $4,000+, so after managing to pick up my jaw from off of the floor, I decided I'll just figure things out on my own at the fitness club. Wish me luck!

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  • At 9:12 AM, Blogger truefluke said…

    I agree with you 100% on your thoughts about opening night. Well said!

    I work out at the gym too, and I think I've done pretty well figuring things out on my own. You do not NEED a trainer, it's not rocket science. Read some articles on for beginners/intermediate workouts. Do a 3 day split with plenty of compound workouts, get plenty of rest, and watch your nutrition. You should do fine.

  • At 9:17 AM, Anonymous nancy said…

    Don't forget the cardio! Good luck, Michael. :-)

  • At 10:18 AM, Blogger The Forechecker said…

    Are you going to be able to catch the game? I'm tied up this afternoon, and would look forward to an informed recap, rather than just reading the standard AP feed.

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Name: Michael
Home: San Tan Valley, Arizona, United States
About Me: A mid-20s male who feels much too old even before he's 30. Has a degree in Sport Management and after branching out and trying a few other things in the job market, has finally decided to go back to his first love of hockey and hope he can break in with a team, big or small, somehow.
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