The back-to-back series starts up again for the Blue Jackets. Tonight, the Jackets battle the Florida Panthers. Both teams have loads of young talent and are looking to make the playoffs in the coming years, and both teams have really good young pieces that can help themselves out. The Panthers are riding a five-game winning streak, which was extended last night against Nashville. Columbus last played Tuesday, in a tough loss to Montreal.
This is the first time these teams are meeting this season, and not much has changed to this team. Jimmy Hayes was dealt to Boston; Brad Boyes (TOR) was bought out; Danny Heatley (EUR), Scott Upshall (STL) and Dan Ellis (WSH) were let go. Mike McKenna was brought in as a third string goalie; and Reilly Smith was brought in the Hayes deal.
For Columbus, John Tortorella has switched Brandon Saad and Nick Foligno- Saad will be on the second line and the captain will be on the top line.
Columbus Blue Jackets
Boone Jenner - Ryan Johansen - Nick Foligno
Brandon Saad - Brandon Dubinsky - Cam Atkinson
Matt Calvert - William Karlsson - Scott Hartnell
Gregory Campbell - William Karlsson - Kerby Rychel
Jack Johnson - David Savard
Ryan Murray - Kevin Connauton
Justin Falk - Andrew Bodnarchuk
Injured: Fedor Tyutin (nose), Cody Goloubef (jaw), Rene Bourque (upper body), David Clarkson (back), Jared Boll (foot), Markus Hannikainen (shoulder)
Scratched: Dalton Prout, Michael Chaput
Brandon Pirri - Aleksander Barkov - Jaromir Jagr
Jonathan Huberdeau - Vincent Trocheck - Reilly Smith
Jussi Jokinen - Dave Bolland - Connor Brickley
Quinton Howden - Derek MacKenzie - Shawn Thornton
Brian Campbell - Willie Mitchell
Erik Gudbranson - Aaron Ekblad
Steven Kampfer - Dmitry Kulikov
Injured: Nick Bjugstad (upper body), Alex Petrovic (foot)
Scratched: Logan Shaw, Dylan Olsen
Players to Watch
Gregory Campbell. An ex-Florida Panther and has scored one goal this year. His leadership and perseverance is very important to Columbus.
Aaron Ekblad. An ironclad defenseman for Florida already and could be a franchise defenseman. If he carries this team on his back, big things could be on the way for Florida.
Enjoy the games tonight. More to come...[img:left]