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[Open Thread] Game Fifty-Four Preview: Columbus Blue Jackets at San Jose Sharks

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26-23-7
3rd in Central Division
11th in Western Conference
29-17-7
2nd in Pacific Division
4th in Western Conference

This morning, one of my co-workers (yes, smartypants, I have a day job) who knows I'm a hockey fanatic but isn't into it herself, the poor deprived child, asked me if it was true the team Los Tiburones de San José are playing tonight is named Blue Jackets.  I said yes.  She asked where the name came from.  I gave her a thumbnail sketch of why it was chosen.  She then asked, "What kind of a logo would you have for that?"  I explained to her the team's current logo... and then mentioned the original.  She gave me a you've-got-to-be-kidding look, so to prove I hadn't hit my head on any solid objects lately sent her a picture of it.

She hasn't stopped laughing since.

Anyway, Rick Nash and the boys are in town.  Think Jody Shelley's glad to see the team that traded him but a few days ago?  Sergei Federov is out with a concussion, but Nash and Nikolai Zherdev are more than enough to keep the defense on edge.

Kyle McLaren might be back tonight.  Hope so; a few good hip checks would be nice to see.  Steve Bernier will be watching from the rafters as Ron Wilson was less than enthralled with his play last game (I remember at least two brutal giveaways), so according to David Pollack expect the following combos, at least to start:

Michalek Thornton Cheechoo
Plihal Marleau Mitchell
Rissmiller Pavelski Grier
Shelley Roenick Goc

Okay, let's drop the puck.