Game Preview: The Columbus Blue Jackets Look To Start A Home-Ice Winning Streak Against New Jersey Devils

By Chris Pennington on December 20, 2018 at 7:15 am
Artemi Panarin returns to the lineup tonight after missing Monday night's game against the Vegas Golden Knights.

Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports

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The Columbus Blue Jackets gain their star forward back tonight after missing him on Monday night against the Vegas Golden Knights.

And sometimes, missing those stars isn't the worst if it means the team is forced to band together a little tighter to get a victory.

But, yes. It will be much nicer to have Artemi Panarin back on the ice tonight.

In a home-ice heavy month of December, the Blue Jackets have yet another chance to improve their Nationwide Arena presence. The surprisingly lowly New Jersey Devils come to town sitting in last place in the Eastern Conference.


PROJECTED LINES

Panarin – Dubois – Atkinson

Foligno – Wennberg – Duclair

Bjorkstrand – Jenner – Anderson

Hannikainen – Dubinsky – Nash

DEFENSEMEN

Murray – Jones

Werenski – Savard

Nutivaara – Harrington

GOALTENDER

Bobrovsky

STORYLINES

  • After starting out November by going 1-4 in their first five games, the Blue Jackets are now riding a three-game point streak. They sit just four points out of first place, behind the Washington Capitals, and share the same amount of games played as them. 
  • The New Jersey Devils finished last season with 97 points, good for fourth place in the Metropolitan Division and a playoff birth. This season has not gone as planned though, with the Devils sitting at the bottom of the league with a minus-22 goal differential. 
  • The Blue Jackets have disappointed on the scoring front lately, only scoring eight goals in their last five games. A matchup against any of the Devils' goaltenders should do the trick for a solid offensive output, with the starting New Jersey goaltender (Keith Kinkaid) allowing three goals per game. 

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