The Blue Jackets need their stars to step up

The Columbus Blue Jackets have hit some bumps in the road in this early part of the season, having lost 3 of their last 4 after starting the campaign with a 3-1 record. We’ve talked about how the new additions have done, and whether a certain depth forward should play more, but I think the biggest problem is a failure of the most important players to perform consistently.

We want production from all lines and pairs, of course. But in the end I believe the team can only go as far as the core players take them. These are cheap nhl jerseys
players with All Star Game appearances, award nominations, long term contracts, and the team’s largest cap hits.

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To start, I identified the top 3 defenders and top 6 forwards by average ice time. This shows which players the coaching staff trusts the most in all situations. These 9 skaters were among the ice time leaders last season as well. This shouldn’t come as a surprise; in the early season you would expect the coaches to rely on the same players that were trusted last year. As the season goes on this may change as other players earn more time.

Here is a comparison of the last year’s stats to this year’s numbers. Ice time and points per game are in all situations, while Corsi For percentage and shooting percentage are at 5 on 5 only. This does not include last night’s game against Arizona, with the exception of Seth Jones who made his season debut last night.

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