Panic is starting to set in around the Columbus Blue Jackets fan base. The Blue Jackets are currently on a downslope for the past two months. This lead to them falling in the standings, but they still hold the final Wild Card spot as of now. While things are not looking great, the Blue Jackets and their fans should not panic yet. But that is a very big yet.
Columbus Blue Jackets Shouldn’t Panic Yet: Part 2
The Blue Jackets have been awful on offense since the beginning of the year. In their 13 games this year Columbus has scored two or fewer goals in nine games. As a result of their lack of offense, the Blue Jackets have earned just 11 of the possible 26 points. Josh Anderson is the only player that has scored 15 or more goals this season for Columbus. Four other teams in the Metropolitan Division have three or more players above the 15 goal mark.
One of the key problems is that the Blue Jackets have suffered injuries throughout the season. Brandon Dubinsky, Cam Atkinson, and Alexander Wennberg have all missed significant time. All three players were expected to be big contributors when the season began. All three of the players mentioned have just recently come back. It will take time for them to gel and get back into the flow of the offense.
The Trade Deadline
A big reason for fans not to panic is that John Davidson and Jarmo Kekalainen are in charge. With the trade deadline quickly approaching Columbus is in good hands. Davidson and Kekalainen have shown throughout their career that we have every reason to trust them. Take a look back to last year’s trade deadline. While the salary dump trades are not a flashy trade, they were necessary. The Ryan Johansen – Seth Jones trade was not at the trade deadline, but it still showed they will do whatever is needed to make the team better.
Both Davidson and Kekalainen know they need to find an offensive threat. They may have to trade a player like Boone Jenner or a top prospect to get what they want. They will probably try to find an experienced and more mature player that has playoff experience. That alone could help make a deep run.
Still In The Playoffs
The Blue Jackets are also still in the Stanley Cup Playoffs if the season were to end today. The Blue Jackets have been terrible for the majority of the 2018 season and are still in a wild-card spot. Their current spot in the playoffs is the final wild-card spot in the east. However, considering the recent performance that is pretty good. The Blue Jackets will not stay in this slump for much longer and might easily make their way back into the top three spots in the Metro Division.
The Blue Jackets defense has been a slump recently. That might be because of the offensive struggles. The defense isn’t as much of a concern. Ryan Murray has started to practice with the team again. This gives Columbus five solid defenders with just the sixth man in the rotation once Murray returns. Another reason why Columbus should not be too worried about the defense is Sergei Bobrovsky. Bobrovsky has been stellar for the Blue Jackets yet again. As long as the Blue Jackets figure out the third pairing, Bobrovksy will take care of the rest.
While the Blue Jackets seem to have a number of issues right now they are still in the Stanley Cup Playoffs as of right now. The offense has struggled since the new year but has players returning from injuries. If Columbus feels like it needs to make a trade then they have a front office that the fans can be confident in. The defense has some issues but have Murray returning from injury and Bobrovsky backstopping the team. These are reasons the Blue Jackets shouldn’t panic yet.
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