Saturday, October 11, 2008

Jackets Win Opener in Dallas
The Blue Jackets earned their first ever road win on a season opener by beating Dallas in overtime 5-4 via a Rick Nash 45' blast from the off-wing. The game had a strange but entertaining ocean wave feel ot it. There were times when the Blue Jackets clearly outplayed the Stars and then there was the second period. In that brutal period dallas looked like they were wearing rocket-powered skates and the jackets are wearing anvils on their backs. Outshot 15-2 in the period, Leclaire the only reason why they were down by 2 goals and not 10. It was discouraging to say the least.

Whatever Hitchcock said in the lockerroom worked as the third period mostly went the Blue Jackets way. Goals by Huselius, Murray and Brassard allin a five minute span seemingly put the game away. However with 3 minutes left a bank shot off of a defenseman then off of Richards shin pad somehow found the net. That fluke was followed by a more standard goal (though Leclaire seemingly did not see the shot with traffic in front of him) less than 30 seconds later allowed Dallas to tie. turco made a couple of great saves late, sliding across to stop a Chmera one-timer comes to mind.

In overtime Turco again looked like he was going to singlehandedly keep Dallas in the game, make three spectacular saves from uncovered player right in front of the goal. Nash and Umberger looked like a tough pairing for Dallas during the 4-on-4 session. Chimera's drop pass to Nash then beautifully placed top shelf shot from beyond the top of the circle put it away.

Many players played well. Brassard (+2) and Chimera (+3) looked solid throughout the game and Russell (+2) was solid at the blue line. An exciting opener tto watch. Hopefully the team can get some rest before tomorrow night's game in Phoenix.

Goals: Voracek, Huseius, Murray, Brassard, and Nash.

NHL Gamecenter is in its free weekend. Delays logging in caused me to miss the first period. I understand they will be swamped by demand during this free weekend, but I still was not happy missing game play. Live scores weren't updating regularly and my flat panel isn't big enough to see the play-by-play area so I turned all the "extras" off: the weird "lights" feature, live score & clock, live scoreboard, and play-by-play. As far as I can tell "lights" only changes the background of the informational areas. Handy for someone I guess. It was nice to be able to shift from game to game (when bandwidth was cooperating). it was not good for the live game scores feature to lag and not present correct scores. A decent start but I am not sure that I will drop the sale price of $150 down when they offer only "selected" playoff games. Only in Bettman logic has a season pass not covering the whole season.

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