Thursday, February 19, 2009

Curse or Stamina?

Yes we won. We beat the Blues. This keeps us in the running for the playoffs. But why don't I feel good about it? Let me tell you why.

It was 4 to 1 at the start of the third period. Sounds great right? It would be, except for that damn curse that has plagued every third period since the very first game. The Blues came back with 14 minutes left to make it 4 to 3. Too close for a seemingly easy win for the Jackets. We have seen a reduction in curse antics since the start of our eradication campaign. Then what is it?

I noticed something in the shoot-out last Monday night. The Jackets looked tired. Sure, it was the end of the game but to compare demeanors, our guys lacked energy. We have an awesome team. Our players our extremely talented and we've got the depth to win game after game. History shows that a majority of Jackets games have been lost in the third period. This is nothing new to most of us. We need more stamina.

I remember a long time ago, something my high-school wrestling coach said; "In a close match, the guy with more energy in the third period wins, every time." I thought it was an excuse to torture a wrestling team into doing more pushups or laps around the gym. It's the classic Rope-A-Dope. And it works.

To be fair, and to gloat about the effects of the Curse Eradication, the Blue Jackets are over .500 for the first time in team history, repeat, team history. Also, we are tied for fifth in the Western Conference. Clearly we are kicking some butt. So let's keep removing obstacles.

Coach Hitchcock even said, "The third period is why I don't like coaching." Next time you drive by Nationwide Arena look for the Jackets in their sweats jogging laps around the outer perimeter.

Shake the Curse.

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