Four consecutive loses to division foes.
Last night, at home, it was a display of the Jackets of the previous seasons.
Blue Jackets threw a stink bomb at Nationwide Arena . Final score: 4-1, with an empty-netter.
Afterwards, the Jackets were ordered to remain at their lockerroom seats as opposed to ducking the media. They talked about “one of those nights” where they simply didn’t have any energy. Coach Ken Hitchcock backed them up. In his post-game address, Hitchcock said, “We had a lot of tired-looking players out there.”
The Blue Jackets, once 8-3-2, are 0-3-1 in their past four games, with each of the losses coming against divisional opponents. In other words, over the past week, they’ve been losing what they call “four-point games.”
The Pittsburgh Penguins, at the moment, have a four-game losing streak. The Minnesota Wild came out of the gate 7-0-1 and then suffered a five-game winless streak. Nashville is 7-1-1 in its past nine; the Preds started the season 2-6, and the six losses were consecutive.
Those are just a few examples.
On his way out of the building last night, Jackets GM Scott Howson said, “You’re always looking to see how a team handles adversity. Here it is.”
Here it is. The Jackets aren’t deep, and they’ve been playing without two top-six forwards, center Michael Peca (groin) and Fredrik Modin (back spasms). They need these guys, or they need adequate fill-ins. At the very least, they need to come up with a decent effort Wednesday night, when the Chicago Blackhawks visit Nationwide Arena.
Last night, boos were heard from a thin crowd of 12,554. The booing was loud, and it was deserved.
It happens sometimes that a team is drained, especially a team coming off the road. But ticket prices don’t change.