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An impressive week in CBJ-land

By Tom

Hi everyone, I’m back after a week largely off the grid.  In my time off, I didn’t get to see enough of the Blue Jackets to count for actual viewing…so when I got home last night to see the team pull out an overtime win against the Vancouver Canucks, you can add me to the list of impressed.  Then, Dave and Dan from “Blue Jackets Live” added that the team had some ridiculous (at least for a team that was sitting in 30th place when I skipped town) point streak going.  Then, the Plain-Dealer’s Tom Reed tweeted that the team was four points out of a playoff spot!

What in the wide world of sports happened to the Columbus Blue Jackets?

When in doubt, look to the stats.  And when I started to compile the league’s activity since I bailed out on the last day of February, an impressive picture formed.  Permit me to share:

1. Chicago – 5 games played, 10 points (continuing their historic run)

2. New York Rangers – 4 GP, 8 pts

2a. Carolina – 5 GP, 8 pts

4. Columbus – 4 GP, 7 pts

4. Detroit – 4 GP, 7 pts

4a. Boston – 5 GP, 7 pts

7.  Washington – 3 GP, 6 pts

7a. Anaheim – 4 GP, 6 pts

7a. New York Islanders – 4 GP, 6 pts

7a. Pittsburgh – 4 GP, 6 pts

7a. Toronto – 4 GP, 6 pts

7a. Buffalo – 5 GP, 6 pts

7b. San Jose – 4 GP, 5 pts

14. Calgary – 3 GP, 4 pts

14. Dallas – 3 GP, 4 pts

14. Montreal – 3 GP, 4 pts

14a. Los Angeles – 4 GP, 4 pts

14a. Minnesota – 4 GP, 4 pts

14a. Vancouver – 4 GP, 4 pts

14a. Winnipeg – 4 GP, 4 pts

14b. Phoenix – 5 GP, 4 pts

14b. St. Louis – 5 GP, 4 pts

23. Colorado – 4 GP, 3 pts

23a. Edmonton – 5 GP, 3 pts

23a. Florida – 5 GP, 3 pts

23a. New Jersey – 5 GP, 3 pts

27. Philadephia – 3 GP, 2 pts

27. Ottawa – 4 GP, 2 pts

27b. Tampa Bay – 5 GP, 2 pts

30. Nashville – 2 GP, 0 pts  (Yes, I double-checked both the numbers for games played and points.  Incredible.)

So…putting aside all of the “how it got done” questions – but I’d love to hear your opinions on what’s changed to make the Blue Jackets into world-beaters over the past week or so –  it appears that the Blue Jackets were performing at the fourth-best pace in the entire National Hockey League while I was gone.

Teams ebb and flow in an NHL season – even one that is condensed to 48 games.  Clearly, the Blue Jackets had all sorts of issues coming out of the lockout related to chemistry (as predicted here, here and here), something that appears to be resolved as the team is figuring out how to win close games.  And how many one-goal games has this team been a part of in 2013?

Not having seen enough of the team of late to know why the CBJ have been winning, all I can say is: Impressive.

At the halfway point of the season, one has to like what they’re seeing of the Blue Jackets and believe that they might have a shot at the playoffs if they can keep this up.

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