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Blue Jackets Closed For Business Written by habsfan93 - February 27th, 2009

With GM habsfan93 about to embark on a self-imposed sabbatical, a team meeting was held to notify all players that there would be no movement whatsoever between now and the trade deadline weekend.

GM habsfan93 delivered the message to his players - focus on playing hockey, not on the press or on where you're going to be playing in a few weeks. There will be absolutely no player movement between now and March 20th. This is your chance to shine, show me what you're capable of. Any player who doesn't hold his own in the next 3 weeks will be on the shopping list come March 21st.

A source close to the team has said that habsfan93 will spend his 3 weeks on a "personal project". We're not really sure what this means, but we're assuming grungy hockey rinks, dirty buses and a clipboard full of notes will be involved. Either that or suntan lotion, beach chairs and a nice cold drink. We're not really sure.

But what is known is that come March 21st, habsfan93 will do a final evaluation of the team and their performance over the next 3 weeks. And for two days only, the Blue Jackets will be open for business.


The Blue Jackets have had a wonky schedule of late. They went on a slump in early February, losing 4 of 6 games. Some moves were made, including trades with Montreal and Phoenix. Brad Boyes, Alexei Zhitnik and Chris Higgins were sent packing. Boyes and Higgins in particular had not performed up to par this season and it had been widely speculated that they would be moved. Zhitnik came as a surprise, as his play has been solid, but its believed that his inclusion in the Boyes deal was necessary to get things done.

Coming to Columbus was Brian Gionta, Kim Johnsson and Gregory Campbell. Gionta is a firecracker right-winger with explosive speed and a great shot. He's been having a solid year so far, and should continue with a similar production, likely playing with Staal and Frolov. Johnsson is a solid defencemen with good offensive capabilities, not unlike Zhitnik. Some might see this as a small downgrade, but Johnsson will be the first to laugh off that statement. Finally, Campbell was brought in and is felt to have a better defensive precense on the 3rd line with Sillinger and Shanny.

After the losing streak, the Jackets played only once over the next 5 days, tying the Blues in a low scoring game. Following that, the Jackets embarked on a 6 games in 6 days embargo, in which they have done very well. An overtime loss to the Flames started the trip, but since that the Jackets have won 4 straight, including an 8-1 blowout victory over the Penguins. Lecavalier, who's lack of production was at the center of the losing streak, has 8 points in his last 4 games to reclaim a spot in the league's top 10 scoring chart. Staal, Hejduk, Zetterberg and Gionta have all added 6 or more points in the last 4 games, while Kim Johnsson has 5 points from the blue line.

Clearly, the new additions are paying off in the form of +1's in the win column.

The Jackets cap off the 6 game stretch with their 3rd consecutive game against the Blues, a series in which they are hoping to go 3-for-3. They follow that up with 2 days off before playing 4 straight including 3 HUGE games against the other top teams in the West, Vancouver, Anaheim and Chicago. This will be a true test as to the playoff abilities of this team.


Reporting from Columbus, you stay classy CMHL!

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