Game Preview: Looking For Any Sign Of Life, The Columbus Blue Jackets Return To Nationwide Arena For A Battle Against The Tampa Bay Lightning

By Ed Francis on April 6, 2021 at 7:05 am
Columbus and Tampa Bay will meet for the the 5th and 6th time this season.
Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports
26-10-2 (54 points)

7:00 P.M. – TUESDAY, APRIL 6


There are just nine home dates left for the Columbus Blue Jackets this season.

At this rate, the 5th Line should hope the Blue Jackets have nine home goals left in them before the end of what is descending into one of the more disappointing seasons in team history.

The Blue Jackets will look to find something to bring the home crowd joy as they return to Nationwide Arena after a road trip that gave Columbus just one win in six games. That win came against the Tampa Bay Lightning, who they'll face Tuesday and Thursday. 

The 1-5-0 road trip doomed the hopes for a 5th straight postseason for Columbus, who has also lost seven of their last eight. 

Here's a look at tonight's projected (and subject to change) lines for Columbus:

Columbus Blue Jackets Projected Lines

50 Eric Robinson 16 Max Domi 29 Patrik Laine
28 Oliver Bjorkstrand 96 Jack Roslovic 13 Cam Atkinson
38 Boone Jenner 42 Alexandre Texier 71 Nick Foligno
26 Zac Dalpe 20 Riley Nash 25 Mikhail Grigorenko

*lines are subject to change

8 Zach Werenski 3 Seth Jones
44 Vladislav Gavrikov 58 David Savard
43 Mikko Lehtonen 15 Michael Del Zotto
Goalie Backup
90 Elvis Merzlikins 70 Joonas Korpisalo


  • FIRST PERIOD WHOAS: The Blue Jackets have not scored more than one goal in the first period since February 15th, a span of 23 games. In fact, they've scored just seven times over those nearly two dozen games. The Blue Jackets have to find a way to put the puck in the net early - if they can't do that, they could be in for a long night against Steven Stamkos and company. 
  • FIND THE RIGHT COMBINATION: The lineup seems to change on a nightly basis, and once the puck drops, the lineup seems to change on a period-by-period basis, and once the intermission hits, the lineup seems to change on a shift-by-shift basis. The right combination of players has to be there somewhere, but perhaps the right combination has already been found and they just need a little more time to gel together. The line of Eric Robinson, Max Domi, and Patrik Laine has shown some promise.
  • PLAYING UP TO THE COMPETITION?: Columbus has points in three of four games against the Lightning this season, and came really close to making that all four games. This team may not be able to hang with the 2001-2002 2020-2021 Detroit Red Wings, but they've been able to hang with Jon Cooper's squad for the duration of the Lightning's run at or near the top. 

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