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Columbus Blue Jackets

Capitals Remain Optimistic Despite 0-2 Hole Against Blue Jackets

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The Washington Capitals know that they have a big hill to climb if they want to turn the tide in their series against the Columbus Clue Jackets.

Despite being down 0-2, Washington is keeping positive about their chances in the series.

“There’s been a lot of difficulties right through the season,” coach Barry Trotz said (h/t NHL.com). “I’ve got a lot of faith in this group.”

“Obviously, we’re disappointed and we’re mad,” Capitals center Nicklas Backstrom said.

“We’re down 2-0 and, obviously, we’re playing a good hockey team. They’ve got two home games now. But we’re going to do everything to turn things around. There’s a lot of hockey left.”

The Caps have come close in each of the first 2 games against Columbus, each time squandering 2-0 leads.

The task of evening the series becomes much more difficult as they will be without forward Andre Burakovsky for the next 2 games as he recovers from an upper body injury.

Still, Washington is trying to stay positive.

“I thought last night we for the most part created more chances, probably had more of the overall play,” Trotz said. “I liked our game. You look at the shot totals, you look at all those things, at the same time, we allowed them with a couple of mistakes to get back in the game.”

Trotz will likely turn to Braden Holtby after pulling Philipp Grubauer in Game 2.

“That’s what we’ve worked on all year, is erasing the last game, focusing on the next one,” Holtby said Sunday. “Use the time we have to make adjustments, see where we can do better, see where we’re doing good, and having success and come up with a good game plan for Game 3.

“It’s on us as players to make sure we’re mentally prepared to execute it.”

Columbus Blue Jackets

Blue Jackets’ Seth Jones To Make Season Debut Against Arizona

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Columbus Blue Jackets defenseman Seth Jones will make his long-awaited season debut on Tuesday as the Blue Jackets take to the ice to face off with the Arizona Coyotes, Columbus head coach John Tortella announced on Monday.

Jones has been out since a preseason game back on September 25th which saw him suffer an MCL sprain that was initially to sideline him for four-to-six weeks of time.

The return of Jones will be a welcome sight for the Blue Jackets as Jones finished second in team scoring last season and led all Columbus defensemen with 57 points.

 

 

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Columbus Blue Jackets

Blue Jackets Sign John Tortorella to Two-Year Contract Extension

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The Columbus Blue Jackets have signed head coach John Tortorella to a two-year contract extension that will keep in with the team through the 2020-21 season, the team announced on Wednesday.

It makes sense for Columbus, who has experienced it’s most success under Tortorella’s watch, highlighted by a a franchise-best 50 wins and 108 point season in 2016-2017 that saw Tortorella walk away with that season’s Jack Adams Trophy as the league’s best coach.

“Our team has been one of the winningest in the NHL over the past two seasons and John Tortorella has played a critical role in that success and in raising the level of our team’s play since his arrival,” Blue Jackets’ general manager Jarmo Kekalainen said. “His passion and commitment to being the best has permeated our team and we believe will lead to even greater success in the future.”

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Columbus Blue Jackets

Blue Jackets’ Zach Werenski Hoping to be Ready by Season Opener

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Columbus Blue Jackets defenseman Zach Werenski is hoping to avoid missing the start of the 2018-19 regular season as he continues to recover from undergoing shoulder surgery earlier this year, according BlueJackets’com’s Brian Hedger.

“My goal, ultimately, is to be there for Game 1,” Werenski said. “You never want to miss time, you never want to miss games, so my goal going into training camp and into the season is to be ready for Game 1.

“If it’s later, like Game 5 or Game 10, whenever that is, I’m going to work to miss as few games as possible and be ready to help the team.”

Werenski, 21, has begun skating but hasn’t progressed to contact drills as he continues his journey back.

“I feel great out there,” Werenski said. “There’s no problems right now. I’m just kind of ramping it up here, trying to get my timing back. Everything feels good on the ice. I haven’t had any contact yet. That’s not until later. I probably won’t do that until probably halfway through training camp, but everything is good. Everything’s on pace. I actually don’t know what my timeline is, to be honest, but I’m hoping to be back toward the start of training camp – probably not Day 1, but as soon as I can be.”

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