The offensive struggles for the Blue Jackets continued as they faced off against the Carolina Hurricanes in a Metro affair. The Jackets ended up falling in overtime but were still able to get a point on the evening, a huge development as they continue to go after the President’s Trophy. It is looking like more of an outside shot than anything, nonetheless, the battle continues.
The Good, The Bad, The Ugly
The Good: The Fourth Line
They are dubbed the fourth line but they keep showing up to play at the most opportune times and have saved the Jacket’s tale more often than not. The line featuring Lukas Sedlak, Sam Gagner and Scott Hartnell continue to put up points despite not having the most traditional of roles.
Gagner and Hartnell picked up the assists on the only Jacket’s goal. All of Gagner, Hartnell and Sedlak had above 68% CF at even strength, easily the best on the team. It raises the question, should the team be giving them more time on ice or should they move those players into more advantageous positions to allow for more offense.
Considering how bad the lineup has been at times, it isn’t a ridiculous question to ask and should be pursued.
The Bad: Almost everyone else other than Korpisalo
A .935 save percentage is going to get you a win most nights and what it doesn’t, that’s when you know you have some real issues. Korpisalo didn’t play out of his mind but did enough to hopefully secure a win. The team around him didn’t do a good enough job to win the game. It has become a familiar refrain and something that needs to be changed for the Jackets to have a chance moving forward. They can’t have nights where the goaltender bails them out on a consistent basis. It’s a recipe for trouble and will get them booted out of the first round of the playoffs.
The Ugly: President’s Trophy hopes
The President’s Trophy is the ultimate goal when it comes to the NHL regular season. It proves that over an 82 game season that you’re the best team and often due to the sample size, it proves that they really are the best team. There chances took a shot last night when they only got one point. While wining the President’s Trophy isn’t the end all, be all. For a team that has exactly zero trophies, putting one on display would be pretty nice.
It’ll be interesting to see if the Jackets continue to pursue that goal or rest certain players down the stretch. It could end up being very telling for their strategy.