Game Preview: Blue Jackets Need A Win And They're In Against The New York Rangers In Pivotal Matchup

By Sam Blazer on April 5, 2019 at 9:57 am
Pierre-Luc Dubois fights for a puck against the New York Rangers

Danny Wild-USA Today Sports

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They need a win in the absolute worst way. Does that mean the Columbus Blue Jackets are going to be able to pull it off? Their Metro Division rival the Washington Capitals were able to help them out by beating the Montreal Canadiens.

Pittsburgh
NEW YORK RANGERS
31–36–13 (75 points)
ROSTER / SCHEDULE

7 P.M. – FRIDAY, APRIL 5
MADISON SQUARE GARDEN
NEW YORK, NEW YORK

FOX SPORTS OHIO
FOX SPORTS GO

To add even more intrigue, it looks like the Blue Jackets are going to be playing wunderkind prospect Alexandre Texier against the Rangers.

Texier has been dominating in the AHL but is he going to be good to go in the bright lights against the Rangers?

Tonight will mark the fourth meeting of the season between the Jackets and the Rangers. The Blue Jackets lead the series, 2–0–1, having taken the last game in Columbus, 7-5, on Jan. 13. All three previous meetings have been decided by two or fewer goals, with two of the games going past regulation.

A lot is riding on this game, and they are going to need their best.

Here's a look at tonight's projected lines for the Blue Jackets:

Forwards

Panarin–Duchene–Atkinson
Dzingel–Dubois–Anderson
Texier–Jenner–Bjorkstrand
Foligno–Dubinsky–Nash

Defenseman

Werenski–Jones
Nutivaara–Savard
Kukan–Harrington

Goaltender

Bobrovsky

Storylines

  • It is going to be all Texier talk here. He is a point per game player in the AHL, and his potential is more than tantalizing. He has a chance to take the Blue Jackets by storm. Is he young enough and perhaps naive enough to just go out, play and succeed? That feels like a distinct possibility. Lightning in a bottle is the hope and wish.
  • From the Blue Jacket pregame notes: "Each of the last seven meetings between the Rangers and Blue Jackets, as well as 13 of the last 14 meetings and 17 of the last 19 meetings between the two teams, have been decided by two or fewer goals." That means that we are going to be in for a tight one. Buckle up Blue Jacket fans.
  • Who is going to be the hero tonight? The Blue Jackets haven't had a lot of noteworthy moments in their history, but it feels like every time they clinch in the playoffs it is memorable. They can do it on a huge stage in New York. It will be exciting to see who steps up.

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