Blue Jackets try to get back to winning hockey as league-mandated Covid Break ends; Nashville in town tonight

COLUMBUS BLUE JACKETS VS. NASHVILLE PREDATORS

TV:  Bally Sports Ohio           Jeff Rimer (play-by-play), Jody Shelley (color analyst), Dave Maetzold (reporter)              
Radio:  97.1 The Fan              Bob McElligott (play-by-play), Dylan Tyrer (host)

THE MATCHUP

COLUMBUS BLUE JACKETS

2021-22 Record: 14-13-1, 29 pts. (5th, Metropolitan Division)

Goals:  3.18 Goals-For/3.36 Goals-Against… Shots:  29.9 Shots-For/34.8 Shots-Against

Power Play:  18.6 percent (17th, NHL)… Penalty Kill:  78.7 percent (22nd, NHL)

Penalty Minutes:  6.9 PIM (3rd, NHL)… Overtime Record (Shootout):  6-0-1 (2-1)

NASHVILLE PREDATORS

2021-22 Record: 19-10-1, 39 pts. (2nd, Central Division)

Goals:  2.93 Goals-For/2.63 Goals-Against… Shots:  34.0 Shots-For/29.2 Shots-Against

Power Play:  25.6 percent (6th, NHL)… Penalty Kill:  79.4 percent (21st, NHL)

Penalty Minutes:  10.8 PIM (30th, NHL)… Overtime Record (Shootout):  5-1-0 (1-0)

Players to Watch:  LW Filip Forsberg is tied for the team lead in goals (13) and has posted 12-8-20 in 21 career games vs. CBJ, including a four-goal game on November 30 at Nashville… D Roman Josi ranks second among NHL blueliners in goals and third in points with 10-19-29 in 30 games this season… G Juuse Saros is 15-8-1 with a 2.22 GAA and .924 SV% in 24 appearances in 2021-22.

ALL-TIME SERIES

Results:  Columbus has gone 29-54-13 in 96 regular season games vs. the Predators, including 20-20-6 at home… Of Note: CBJ went 2-5-1 (2-1-1 at home) vs. Nashville in 2020-21… The home team is 8-1-1 in the last nine games of the series… The winning team has recorded three-plus goals in 18 of the last 19 meetings, including the past four-straight… Nashville owns 10 of the 15 shutouts in the all-time series… Each team has collected three hat tricks in the all-time series.

This Season (CBJ, 0-1-0)

Nov. 30, 2021 – at Nashville 6, Columbus 0

Dec. 30, 2021 – at Columbus (7 p.m.)

CBJ TEAM NOTES

The Blue Jackets play their first game following the NHL’s holiday break… The club hasn’t played since falling 5-2 at Edmonton on Dec. 16 as the last five scheduled games have been postponed due to COVID-related reasons… CBJ have scored three or more goals in 18 of their 28 games this season (13-5-0) and are 11-1-0 when scoring at least four goals in a contest… CBJ are 6-0-1 in OT/SO this season with the six victories tied for the second-most in the NHL and the .857 win pct. the third-highest… The Blue Jackets are scheduled to play three-straight home games and four of the next five at Nationwide Arena… Columbus is 9-3-1 (19 pts.) at home this season, tying the franchise record for most wins (2016-17, 2017-18) and most points (2016-17) through the first 13 games of a season at NWA in franchise history… CBJ have trailed in nine of their 14 victories this season… CBJ rank fourth in goals (19) and eighth in the NHL in points (70) by defensemen this season.

CBJ PLAYER NOTES

Jake Bean has collected 1-3-4 in the last five games… RW Oliver Bjorkstrand leads the club in scoring and multi-point outings with 9-14-23 and seven multi-point efforts in 28 contests… C Max Domi has recorded 4-2-6 in the last six games played… C Boone Jenner has recorded 7-7-14 in the past 22 games and leads the team in goals (11) and power play goals (5)… C Sean Kuraly had a career-best four-game points streak from Dec. 5-11 (2-2-4) and has collected 2-3-5 in the last six outings… LW Eric Robinson, has 3-3-6 in the last seven outings… F Alexandre Texier leads the Blue Jackets in goals and points and ranks second-T in plus/minus rating since Nov. 6 with 7-7-14 and is +5 in 19 games… RW Jakub Voracek is tied for the NHL lead in primary assists (17) and ranks seventh-T in power play assists (9)… D Zach Werenski, who has collected assists in the past two games, has played 27-plus minutes in five of the last eight contests, and ranks second in the NHL in TOI/GP (26:29).

MILESTONES

•     C Max Domi is three goals from 100 and seven assists from 200 for his NHL career (97-193-290, 447 GP).

•     C Sean Kuraly is two games from 300 for his NHL career (29-49-78, 298 GP).

•     LW Gustav Nyquist is two games from 600 for his NHL career and two games from 100 in his CBJ career (150-208-358, 598 GP; 19-33-52, 98 GP).

•     RW Jakub Voracek is four games from 1,000 for his NHL career (217-543-760, 996 GP).

OhioHEALTH INJURY REPORT

•     D Dean Kukan (wrist fracture; Injured Reserve on Oct. 26) is expected to miss 8 weeks

•     LW Patrik Laine (oblique strain; Injured Reserve on Nov. 5) is expected to miss 4-to-6 weeks

•     D Adam Boqvist (upper body; Injured Reserve on Dec. 9) is expected to miss at least a week

•     G Joonas Korpisalo and LW Eric Robinson (COVID-19 protocol on Dec. 20)

•     RW Oliver Bjorkstrand (COVID-19 protocol on Dec. 27)

•     D Gavin Bayreuther (COVID-19 protocol on Dec. 29)

TOTAL MAN GAMES LOST: 84

COURTESY BLUE JACKETS COMMUNICATIONS

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