COLUMBUS, Ohio — After dropping a 4-2 decision to the Dallas Stars on Saturday night, the Columbus Blue Jackets returned home with hopes of having a better outcome. It didn’t happen, but it wasn’t for the lack of effort. When it was all said and done, the Blue Jackets remained winless in the 2011-12 season due to a 3-2 loss to the Stars last night at the Nationwide Arena.
Quickly getting to the action, the Blue Jackets and Stars were scoreless after one. Forward Cody Bass, who was summoned from the Springfield Falcons on Monday after Matt Calvert was re-assigned, introduced himself to Blue Jacket nation by exchanging punches with Stars forward Jake Dowell. Asked by the coaching staff to provide energy on the forecheck or an occasional fight, Bass fulfilled his role, but didn’t receive a three-star award for it though.
Heading into the second period, the Blue Jackets were looking to match their energy level in the first 20 minutes and finally find the back of the net behind Stars netminder Kari Lehtonen. Dallas forward Steve Ott had other plans in mind, giving the Stars a 1-0 lead. The Jackets outshot the Stars 12-7 in the second and 24-11 after two periods of play.
Stars forward Jamie Benn didn’t waste anytime in the final frame, giving the Stars a commanding 2-0 lead just 1:31 in. But it was Derek Brassard, making an appearance on the top line in place of the injured Jeff Carter, who finally put the Blue Jackets on the board at 5:06 of the 2nd period on the power play. Rick Nash and David Savard had the helpers on Brassard’s first goal of the season.
Stars forward Michael Ryder and Blue Jackets defensemen Kris Russell exchanged goals, but nothing else came about in terms of offense, as the Blue Jackets remained winless through six games.
“You can hang your head and feel sorry for yourself,” Head Coach Scott Arniel said when addressing the media following the game, “but nobody else in the league is going to feel sorry for you so you better keep throwing that effort out there. You’d think with 40 shots you’re going to get more than two [goals]. We’ve got to find a way to get more goals.”
Speaking of the post-game, forward RJ Umberger spoke with the media about the frustrating style of play the Dallas Stars bring to the rink before being asked what Coach Arniel had to say to his troops after the game. His very brief and forceful comments may lead one to think that a slight separation could be happening with Head Coach Scott Arniel and his frustrated Blue Jacket players:
The Blue Jackets hit the road for a Friday night contest at the Joe Louis Arena against the Detroit Red Wings.
Certainly not a lot of time to re-group. Even less time for there to be a locker room divide.
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Darren is the Washington Capitals correspondent. He spent the 2010-11 season covering the Atlanta Thrashers and the 2011-12 season covering the Columbus Blue Jackets. Feel free to contact him @ DKoz256@yahoo.com. You can also follow him on Twitter. DarrenCoslov