Game Preview: Blue Jackets Face Quality Test As They Take On Red-Hot Golden Knights

By Chris Pennington on December 17, 2018 at 7:15 am
Boone Jenner leads the Columbus Blue Jackets with 244 faceoffs won on the season.

Russell LaBounty-USA TODAY Sports

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Another home game, another chance for the Columbus Blue Jackets to try and build momentum in their own building while the season is still young.

The Jackets battle with the Vegas Golden Knights tonight for the first time this season on a rare Monday outing for the boys in blue.

One offseason removed from a Stanley Cup Finals appearance, the Golden Knights have recovered from a slow-season start to currently boast a record. After staggering to a 9-12-1 record through 22 games, Vegas has gone 9-2-1 in their last 12.

Tonight will be a good test for a Jackets team who have gone through waves of inconsistency, especially against top-tier clubs.


PROJECTED LINES

Panarin – Dubois – Atkinson

Foligno – Jenner – Anderson

Bjorkstrand – Wennberg – Sedlak

Hannikainen – Dubinsky – Nash

DEFENSEMEN

Murray – Jones

Werenski – Savard

Nutivaara – Harrington

GOALTENDER

Bobrovsky

Storylines:

  • William Karlsson, former Blue Jacket who was not protected during the 2017 expansion draft and was therefore taken by the Golden Knights, is continuing to give Columbus management and fans face palms. Karlsson is currently tied for the lead for the Knights in points this season with 26, after an insane breakout of 78 points last season (that included 43 goals). 
  • The Blue Jackets have played their last four games at home and have sputtered out just three points during that time. They play at home on Thursday and Saturday of this week, allowing a great chance for the team to start to establish a home-ice winning presence. The Jackets are a measly 8-7-2 at home this season, the worst of any team in current playoff contention.
  • Cam Atkinson and Artemi Panarin are both having career seasons, both with 34 points in 31 games. They are both on track to break their own personal point records, with Cam more so focusing on the scoring (19 goals) and ‘Bread’ being more about playmaking (25 assists).
  • This is the first of two times that the Jackets will be taking on the Golden Knights this season, the second meeting being on Saturday Feb. 9 in Las Vegas. The series between the two was split 1-1 last season.

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