Sunday, April 04, 2004

Columbus 4 Detroit 1 The Blue Jackets finish the 2003-2004 season with a win over the powerful Detroit Red Wings. Columbus dominated a game in which Detroit seemed willing to coast through and ease into the playoffs.

Goalie Mark Denis was sharp for Columbus. Denis is easy to overlook given the poor win total of the Blue Jackets. A bit of perspective is needed to truly assess the goalie. His save percentage is quite good, .918, and tied him with Toronto stopper Ed Belfour. Some experts toss around Belfour's name as an MVP candidate, so Denis is in good company. Another year of experience for the defense should push Denis' win total up next year. Hopefully he will not be second in saves (1970 shots on goal against Denis this year) again next season.

Rick Nash netted his 41st goal of the year. Hopefully that will be enough goals to earn his a share of the goal scoring title. Nash is being closely tracked by Kovalchuk and Iginla. We'll see. Good luck, Rick!

Blue Jackets' D Rusty Klesla missed the game because of a charley horse sustained Thursday night against Detroit in Columbus (when he was checked into the Detroit bench door). Columbus also was without centers Alexander Svitov (ankle), Todd Marchant (groin) and Manny Malhotra (ankle).

End of regular season.

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