Tuesday, December 5, 2006

Steady Freddy indeed!

It's a Tuesday night full of firsts for the Blue Jackets, who toppled the Colorado Avalanche 3-0 in Denver. I couldn't be more pleased by the play of our beloved Blue Jackets tonight. On game 4 of a 5 game road trip, the Blue Jackets got their first win at the Avs' Pepsi Center. In addition, it was the first time in franchise history that Columbus has beaten Colorado in regulation.

And if that wasn't enough, they got back-to-back shutouts for the first time too.

All Blue Jacket goals came at even strength, which was pretty much their only option. Colorado only gave up 4 minutes of power play time. The Jackets took four two-minute penalties, once causing a 5-3 advantage for the Avs. The penalty kill lines were up to the task, however.

The team was all around sharp. They played with confidence and flair, they made offensive opportunities and played a tight reliable defense that created a redundancy in front of the net that I've never seen before. As Norrena moved to stop shots, other players, forward and defense alike, stepped in to seal cracks and stop the Colorado offense from getting one past the line.

Norrena was a net minding machine- stopping shot after shot, 42 of them in all. Despite pitching a shutout away with 42 saves, Norrena was snubbed from being a star of the game. I can only explain that as an oversight by the star selection committee. With back to back shutouts, I'd say he's a contender for the the league-wide star of the week. Regardless of his star status, Norrena isn't playing like an NHL rookie. At the rate he's going, he's going to put a lot of pressure on Leclaire and there will be competition to be the starting tender for the Jackets.

Kudos to Carter, who played a hell of a game. 77 was on ice for all three goals and always seemed to be in exactly the right spot to make a play. Carter has made a serious impact on this Jackets team, especially since the signing of Ken Hitchcock. The Jackets staff needs to make sure he's given all the ice time he can handle, and that he's happy in central Ohio. I don't want Carter going anywhere.

Despite the win, the notice board is coming back:


Adam Foote - You're the captain, Foote. Keep out of the penalty box. As an experience veteran, there is no reason you should be taking these penalties. Your first penalty came while you were already on the PK. That's the worst time to get sent to the box. You leave your team doubly vulnerable. Your other penalty came just as the team finished killing a tripping call against Klesla, too.

Jackets win! Again! 3-0
Box Score

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