Columbus Blue Jackets, Ohio State, and Syracuse Crunch: Game Reactions
Lost in all this goal-inconclusive-so-let's-reverse-it mumbo jumbo, was a decent road game by most of the Jackets.
I'll spare everyone the spotlight today and just throw a few thoughts out there and see what you all think:
•Leclaire held the Jackets in there during the first period and played very well—especially on the extended five on three. There wasn't much he could do on either Wild goal, but unfortunately he left the game injured (again). If this guy could ever stay healthy...sigh.
•Have the Jackets gotten a five on three PP yet this season?
•Chimera-Brassard-Voracek created the most chances by far...again. It was nice to see Hitch increase Voracek's ice time to just under 15 minutes. That's more like it.
These two kids are playing wonderful hockey and look to be the real deal. I hope Hitch keeps playing them because I still believe that they are the difference between us being contenders and pretenders.
•I tell ya, Brass got really lucky out there catching that skate blade on his chin and not on his throat. There were some anxious moments there and I'm sure I speak for everyone when I say that thankfully he's okay. It was great to see him come back out and make a nice rush with the puck to set up Nash's goal.
•The good news is that he's creating some fantastic chances for himself. The bad news is that he's 0-7 on those seven breakaways. C'mon law of averages!
•The Jackets had their moments last night, controlling long stretches of the play. Unfortunately, so did the Wild. Overall, it was a decent road game minus the climax.
•I loved Brass' reaction after that game ended when he broke his stick in frustration. These new faces aren't used to losing and that's a good thing.
•I thought Manny looked better than Umberger between Nash and Huselius, but that's not saying a whole lot. I really like his ability to win some offensive zone faceoffs, even though by his standards he had a below average night in the circle, winning 10 and losing 12.
•I thought the top four defensemen played better than they have recently. Klesla got a goal, but just as importantly, I thought both he and Tyutin managed the puck better.
As I mentioned in the comments of a previous post, Hitch has his work cut out for him to pull this team back together after such a back-breaking loss. You hate to say it, but at 3-5 they've got to find a way to get some points tomorrow night off a struggling Anaheim squad.
Ohio State and Syracuse fared better this weekend. Ohio State lost versus No. 2 Denver on Friday, but rebounded on Saturday night with an exciting come from behind 4-3 win which was capped off by Sophomore Peter Boyd. Zac Dalpe, Chris Reed, and Corey Elkins all scored for the Buckeyes.
The Buckeyes now sit at 2-3-1.
The Crunch won both of their games over the weekend to move to 5-1. (What's that like?) They won 4-3 over Binghamton Friday with goals from Wilson, Sigalet, MacDonald, and Pineault. Plekhanov had a couple of helpers and Mayorov picked up one as well.
Speaking of Mayorov, he added two goals and another assist the following night as the Crunch rocked a very poor Rochester team 6-1. Wilson also got three points, with a goal and two helpers.
Plekanov added another two assists, Vigalante had a goal and a helper, and Starkov added a goal. John "Nasty" Mirasty also added a few fights to the mix. (I read that he won both against a guy a foot taller.)
Mayorov has 3G 4A in six games thus far, and from all reports has looked very good early on. He's tied with Plekhanov and Wilson for the team lead in scoring.
Dan LaCosta won both games and it's expected that Steve Mason will get his first game action next weekend.
Puck-rakers also reported this afternoon that Jared Boll is expected to be back in the lineup tomorrow night. No word yet on if he's "fight eligible."
Oh and about that reversal—here is the Wild's own beat writer's view on the goal:
"The Wild owes the NHL's video war room a bouquet of roses and bottle of Pinot noir."
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