Scoring by Committee Approach for Blue Jackets is (Finally) Beginning to See Fruit

By Chris Pennington on December 24, 2019 at 1:45 pm
Seth Jones, Boone Jenner, Gustav Nyquist and Pierre-Luc Dubois celebrate Jenner's tying goal for the Columbus Blue Jackets against the Los Angeles Kings on Dec. 19.
Russell LaBounty-USA TODAY Sports

It's beginning to look a lot like...the 2016-2017 Columbus Blue Jackets?

That was a season in which the Blue Jackets lacked an offensive superstar (as they had for most of their franchise's history) but managed to rip off their best season to date and enter the playoffs with 108 points.

How did this happen? Score by committee, of course, as many of us have learned to phrase it.

It was a phrase that Head Coach John Tortorella himself used in early September when describing what the team would need to do to put the puck in the net - in light of the big free agency departures they experienced on the scoring front:

"It's an opportunity for the people...hopefully other guys take more strides and continue to get better as players," said Tortorella in a pre-season interview. "...It just gives other people the opportunity to fill that. And I feel comfortable where we're going with some of our young kids that can do that."

At the start of the year, he was being proved wrong night after night. The club looked reminiscent of its early 2000's days where scoring was like a luxury. They were averaging a near league-worst 2.33 goals per game through their first 15 contests, and the conclusions were being drawn left and right about their future.

Now, the team is on a five-game win streak, where they have defeated the likes of the league-best Washington Capitals and 4th-best New York Islanders. In their last 22 games, they are up to 2.86 goals per game, and 3.38 during this eight-game point streak. 

What's working? The scoring by committee approach, finally (and we hope it sticks). Even in a time where the Blue Jackets are missing five regular forwards, they are seeing scoring come from all over the board.

In the five-game win streak, specifically - they have had 17 different players tally a point. Considering the injuries piling up to big-name scorers like Oliver Bjorkstrand, Cam Atkinson and Josh Anderson - this is a huge bright spot for the club.

If Columbus can continue to get contributions from the bottom of their lineup to the top - they could be a dark horse playoff team come April - already with a lockdown defensive unit and a Joonas Korpisalo who has been lights out and is only getting more confident.

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