Monday, January 1, 2007

Happy New Year from The Jacket Times

And we're back, Jacket fans. I apologize for my lack of posts this holiday season. I can come up with excuses all day, but that doesn't accomplish much. Let' s just pick up where we left off.

The Jackets have played 6 games since December 22, the date of the last post. In that time they've gone 3-3. Overall, the Jackets are 9-7 for the month of December. That's a winning record and something to be proud of.

Last night was, of course, the Blue Jackets New Years Eve special. I attended my 3rd(?) NYE game and was not disappointed. The Jackets played solidly, despite taking a couple early penalties that slowed offensive production in the first period. The second began with Columbus down 1-0, but they rallied back quickly to put two behind Khabibulin. The first CBJ goal of the night was phenomenal. On a pass from Nash, Fedorov flew into the slot and one-timed the puck into the net, in an effort quite reminiscent of Bobby Orr's 1970 Stanley Cup winning goal.

The second period also brought one of the most exciting moments in all of sports. Nash was brought down on a breakaway and was awarded with a penalty shot. Nash deked right, then back to the left in hopes of getting it behind Khabibulin's skate. The attempt was unsuccessful though due to a late but pointed poke check- which pretty sums up Nash's night. Despite a couple of breakaways and some great shots, #61 was unable to get one in.

Norrena fought the good fight and got the win, stopping 21 of 22 Blackhawk shots. The one that did get by managed to slip around or between his legs and just trickle in behind him. If Norrena knew where it was, it could have been stopped easily. Unfortunately, he lost sight of it.

Also worth noting, the Jackets had two goals waved off. The first was due to Malhotra getting caught for goaltender interference. The second, a shot from Hainsey at the point, was determined to have deflected off of Nash's hand before hitting the net.

In all, it was a great game that demonstrated a lot of physical play. Big hits were plentiful and there was no shortage of punches to the face either. A great New Year's game.

Jackets win 3-1
34 pts, 4th place in the division, 3pts behind Chicago
Box Score

Photo from CBSsportsline.com (AP)

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