The Western Canadian road trip has rarely held any sort of importance for the Columbus Blue Jackets outside of traveling and displaced fans bragging rights. This season has a much different meaning to it, and this often forgotten road trip can make or break the playoff hopes that the Jackets currently sit on the fence on.
This road trip has already seen the Blue Jackets take on the Calgary Flames in a game they could have easily come away with two points from. That being said, they could not hold on to the lead and eventually lost outside of regulation, resulting in a much-needed point to keep the ship afloat.
The following games come against the Edmonton Oilers and the Vancouver Canucks, two teams also fighting for playoff spots that the Blue Jackets have fared favorably against in recent history.
The first game of the two comes against Edmonton on Saturday, a team with a high-powered offense and a weaker blue line and goaltending situation. Columbus did not play well in the first meeting with the Oilers this season, losing 4-1 during a rough stretch of the season for the Blue Jackets. Needless to say, this is a much different lineup and it could quite easily result in two points for the Jackets - if they can find a way to slow down Connor McDavid, Leon Draisaitl and company.
The second game in mention, and final of the series, is against the Vancouver Canucks. Columbus showed their ability to battle back less than a week ago against Vancouver and pulled out a 5-3 victory. They have also fared well in the past few seasons when visiting Rogers Arena, giving them every reason to believe they can come away with another two points.
If the Blue Jackets can come away from the Western trip with another four points from the next two games, there is every reason to believe they can make the playoffs come season end. This trip could undoubtedly make or break the playoff hopes of the city of Columbus.