Earlier this week it was reported that the NHL was finalizing the addition of 5 more outdoor games to the 2013-2014 NHL schedule. Honestly, this is the last thing that should be on their mind. Below are four things I find to be more important than adding 5 outdoor games.

 

1. What is going on with the Coyotes?

      Honestly, does anyone know what is going on with the Coyotes Organization right now? Are they staying? Are they going? Is there a buyer? At the end of the season if there is no viable income coming from the organization I say shut it down. Don’t even think twice about it, just shut it down. I know that sounds callous but this has been a hot button for a few years now. At what point do you stop talking and start doing?

 

2. Where are the two new teams going?

The NHL took the time to release the finalized realignment yet no one knows where the new teams will be located. I’ve heard rumblings of Seattle and Ontario.  Although putting a team in Ontario will likely mess with the realignment and force a newly moved team back to the East. Toronto would also benefit from having a second NHL team. Unfortunately, the NHL would have to deal with the same issue as putting a team in Ontario. Quebec would be out for the same exact reason too. So where should the NHL put two, maybe three, teams?

a) Anchorage, Alaska

Anchorage has a lot of attractions to draw people into the idea of going to see a hockey game there. I know I would travel from Ohio to Alaska to take in a game, go to the zoo, and see a few glaciers before they all melt. Plus, Brandon Dubinsky is from Alaska. Need I say more?

b) North Dakota/ South Dakota

You can’t honestly tell me that people in those two states do not like hockey. The question is are there enough people in either state who would come out to a NHL game.

c) New Orleans, Louisiana

This one is probably the biggest reach of them all. I have no clue where they would build a stadium or if people in the area would go to a game. For some reason the thought of putting a team in NOLA intrigues me. In the off season, which is most of hockey season, travel is inexpensive. Plus, believe it or not, there are a lot of hockey fans in Mississippi and Arkansas. Could the NHL corner the market on the southern fans by putting a team in NOLA? Is it worth the risk?

d) Regina, Saskatchewan

I don’t know much about Canada but I do know that I enjoy saying the word Saskatchewan. I’d also like to see the country that invented the game have a few more teams. Plus, it would be nice for the Jets to have a Canadian team nearby.

 

One of the biggest challenges of expanding the NHL is creating a buzz for these new teams. I would have no problem with adding two, or three, extra outdoor games next year. This would be a one year only thing and it would be in the town of the new team. Their opponents for those games should be the 2012-2013 Stanley Cup winner and whatever two teams would draw in the biggest crowd. If you’re in the business of making money and not making your fans angry this would have been the route to take.

 

3. Where’s my All-Star Game?

The city of Columbus has been asking this question for quite some time. When Columbus lost the All-Star game with the lock out an estimated 72 million dollars  in earnings went with it. A lot of time and effort went into preparing for the All-Star game. Shirts were made, banners hung, and new hotels were built. Let’s take a moment to reflect on the havoc you wrecked upon the wonderful Columbus Blue Jackets ticket reps. Can you even imagine what it would be like to have to take those angry/frustrated calls from fans? Bless their hearts. So NHL if you could give the All-Star game back to Columbus that  would be great.

 

4. The Olympics

Apparently the Olympics are still a hot topic right now. Should the NHL let them play? Should the NHL not let them play? For me the answer is “Yes, we should let them play in the Olympics”.

Every four years hockey becomes relevant in the United States. For two weeks “mainstream” sports fans are glued to their televisions watching games. They are constantly checking their phones for updates. Names like Kane, Kesler, Howard, and Johnson become household names through out America. People begin to realize that the term “icing” does not just apply to cupcakes. Yes, during those two weeks our favorite players names get slaughtered. Yes, we field a lot of elementary hockey questions. Who cares people are finally invested in hockey.

The NHL constantly talks about wanting to create more revenue and draw in new fans. Letting the players participate in the Olympics can do just those things. Pretty much every television around the world is tuned into the Olympics. If any of the NHL players do well  people in other countries are going to order “Game Center Live” and different television packages so they can continue to watch their favorite player. They are going to order jerseys and fan gear. Who knows they may even come to America and Canada to see their favorite Olympian play in a NHL game. So why even entertain the thought of not allowing players to participate in one of the most prestigious events to ever exist? What does the NHL gain from not letting them play? I’ll tell you what they gain : angry fans and angry players. Especially since these guys are already entering into Olympic training mode.

 

 

 

Here we go guys!! As I promised on Monday I bring to you a fan spotlight :) !! If  you’re a fan of the Blackhawks, Sharks, Rangers, Stars, Jets, or Blue Jackets and want to be recognized for your awesomeness send an email my way. CTNspotlight@gmail.com

 

CBJ Fan Spotlight

 

Name: Cody Compton

Twitter Handle: @ccompton96

Tell me a little bit about yourself: I’m a major hockey fan. That’s all you need to know.

When did you become a fan of the Columbus Blue Jackets: been a fan and season ticket holder since 2000! 

Have you been to a CBJ game if so tell me about your experience: every game I never get tired of coming . Wether we win or lose

Where do you see the team in five years: I see them as a Stanley cup contender.

Favorite current player: either Captain America , Dorsett , or , Cam Atkinson

Favorite past player: Jody Shelley

Favorite CBJ memory (on or off the ice): to many good memory’s to pick a favorite but any time we beat the Red Wings is a good memory.

Favorite CBJ Jersey design: 07 home jerseys 

BOB or MASE? Love Bob and love Mase no favorite here.

Favorite thing to eat at Nationwide: nachos, two cheese lots of peppers 

Favorite place to sit in the arena: upper bowl! You can see everything

If you could be any person in the CBJ organization for a day who would you be and why? Scott Howson to show em how to do the job ;p  (note: this last question was answered mere days before Howson was let go. It’s like this kid is psychic)

 

 

On this day 26 years ago in Indianapolis a very important document was signed. A document that would forever change the history of Ohio. The birth certificate of John Joseph Louis Johnson the third, Captain of the United States of America. Who knew this little bundle of joy would grow up to lead the US to victory upon victory?  What’s even more shocking is the fever that has overtaken Ohio. So much love for a man from the University of Michigan. Ludicrous I say, ludicrous. Today we salute you, Captain America. May you celebrate your birthday with the same gusto with which you celebrate your goals. Happy Birthday Jack Johnson!!

 

 

6 of the 7 times I’ve posted hockey shots dedicated to a team that team has lost. Today I’m dedicating these shots to the Lock Out in hopes that the Lock Out ends.

 

This first shot goes out to the one and only Commissioner Gary Bettman. Since his reign began in 1993 the NHL has experienced three lock outs. In those 18 years Bettman has become a scapegoat for all problems ranging from lock outs to global warming. He’s even been given some rather spectacular nicknames such as “The Count”. So Count Bettman this shot is for you. Drink up and negotiate.

The Count Bettman

1-part Black Velvet Whiskey
1- part Grape Soda
1 part Cherry Vodka

In the counts voice ” 1, 2, 3. THREE!! THREE LOCK OUTS ah ah ah” then shoot!

 

Don’t you just love it when someone tells you they are going to do one thing and they end up doing the opposite? Ya, me neither. Which is why I’m a little salty with the New York Rangers. They stood in front of everyone and said they were united. That they were not going to flee to another country. What fools we were to believe they wouldn’t leave us behind. After the lock out was announced many of the New York Rangers packed up and left us behind. This shot is dedicated to the team who left us behind.

 

Flight of the Rangers

1 part Cruzan Black Strap Rum
1 part Cruzan Vanilla Rum
1 part Cruzan Black Cherry Rum
1 park Coke

* Before taking this shot tell everyone at the bar you’ll be there all night. Take the shot, throw your money on the bar, and run out before anyone can stop you.*

 

Without Paul Bissonnette my days on twitter would be few and far between. The man sure knows how to start a riot. Be forewarned Biznasty haters. If you tweet Biznasty something rude he will retweet it and his twitter minions will get all up in your twitter grill. Without further ado the shot dedicated to the panty soup legend himself.

 

Risky Bizness

 1 part Absinthe
1 part orange juice
1 part maple syrup
1 part egg white

*After shooting say something that will get everyone riled up. Repeat the responses. *

 

You know what’s worse than someone doing the exact opposite of what they said they were going to do? Someone leaving in the middle of the night before you have a chance to say goodbye. Before you have a chance to fix things. That my friends is what Evengi Malkin did. The day before the lock out Malkin signed with a KHL team. I understand why he left but understanding doesn’t make it hurt less. The least you could do is drink the shot I’ve made for you.

Malkin Early

2 parts Stoli Salted Karamel
1 part Baileys
carmel and chocolate sauce on top

*Tell everyone to count to three. When you hit number two shoot before everyone else*

 

 

While many signed with European leagues and decided to play in the minors there was one man who decided to go a different route. Captain of Team USA and Columbus Blue Jackets Defenseman, Jack Johnson, went back to the University of Michigan to finish school. While many were moaning about how hockey is the only life they know Jack Johnson was making sure he had other options. A lot of players could learn from Jack. If you have the time and money finish up school so you have options in situations like these. Cheers to you Captain America. Study Hard, Play Hard, Party Hard.

 

Captain America Goes to School

1 Part Cherry Vodka
1 Part Blue Berry Vodka
1 part Vanilla Vodka

Drop in a glass of Red Bull

 

 

Here’s to an end to the lock out. Hopefully sooner rather than later.

 

A little over a year ago I fell in love with the Columbus Blue Jackets. Many of my friends were miffed because I popped out of the womb proclaiming my love for the Chicago Blackhawks. They constantly ask me how I could even think about liking the Jackets. My response to them is usually this : “The Chicago Blackhawks are like your first love. You hold on to them because they have been there your whole life. The Columbus Blue Jackets are that homely girl who steals your heart and you end up marrying her. She cooks for you, cleans for you, and would do anything for you. The Blue Jackets are that team who will do everything in their power to show you just how much you are appreciated. Not because they have to because they want to.”  That my friends is real love.

I would like to take a moment to thank the Columbus Blue Jackets organization for everything they have done for me. Especially recently.

To my very first ticket rep Erica : Thank you for the support you showed my family last 4th of July when my Uncle Don died. You called me the day after the funeral to check in with me. To see how I was doing. Not once did you mention buying season tickets. Then in February when I lost my job you gave me a hug and said things will get better. You were right Erica. Things did get better.

To James Wisniewski: I met you two days after I became unemployed. When you found out I lost my job you wished me luck and said “I’m sure someone as nice as you will get a job in no time.” In July you were tweeting out local businesses from fans on twitter. I still didn’t have a job so I chanced it and tweeted at you saying I had no job. You in turn did something that literally changed my life. You retweeted me and added “Someone hook this girl up with a job!”. Two weeks later a fan of yours, who I’ve never met, tweeted a job lead at me. I looked into it  and the day before my birthday I was hired in as an Assistant Manager. Thank you so much for your support. Thank you for tweeting out that I needed a job. I’ve followed your career since you were a Blackhawk and never in my wildest dreams did I think James Wisniewski would be one of the reasons why I have a job. I could never thank you enough.

To my second ticket rep Cody: Thank you for your patience. You became my ticket rep in the midst of my unemployment. You listened to me talk about my struggles with moving. Especially about how hard it is to be away from my family. You wished me luck with every job interview I told you about. You kept me positive with every job I was denied. You called me to congratulate me on my new job and to wish me a happy birthday. Cody you have gone above and beyond what anyone could ask for in a ticket rep. Again, thank you. I can’t wait to sit down and talk to you about what I can do season ticket wise. It’s going to be a great season!!

To, the one and only, Jack “Captain Amerijack” Johnson : Thank you for the birthday tweet that killed my battery. :) I was extremely worried about my birthday this year. It was my first birthday in 27 years that I was away from my family. Everyone that I’m friends with in Columbus was working on my birthday and I was afraid to be alone. See on my 21st birthday one of my best friends committed suicide and every birthday since then if I’m not busy I end up dwelling on it. Jack, this was the first birthday since her death that I didn’t stop smiling the whole day. The amount of love I received from your fan base was unreal. Thank you. Thank you so much for making me feel special on my birthday. You didn’t have to.

 

There are many more stories like this from fans around the organization. If you are a Blue Jackets fan then you are loved!

Please share your heart warming Blue Jacket stories in the comment below. I would love to hear them. I’m sure the organization would too.

THANK YOU COLUMBUS BLUE JACKETS!

 

If there is one thing Patrick Kane is good at it’s causing a boat load of shenanigans. The man went out on the town last night with Jack Johnson the Third. Wait a second. That’s not Jack Johnson. I can see how one would get confused. I mean, come on,  the man on the left is wearing a plaid shirt, a Bauer hat and looks very American. If I had a whole case of beer and a bottle of Jameson I too would think he was Jack Johnson. Sorry man, the only thing you have right about this picture is the fact Jack Johnson is a “Good Dude”. I hope one day you get to meet the real Captain AmeriJack.

 

Stick taps to @redditcbj for the picture.

Earlier today team USA held a Question and Answer session via twitter with Captain America himself, Jack Johnson III. Hopefully this Q&A session will explain to the rest of the NHL why Jack has stolen the hearts of the fans in LA and Columbus. Jack is a very diplomatic, honest and caring person. I think that comes through during this Q&A. If you didn’t get a chance to read it while it happened I have the Q&A here. Enjoy :) GO USA!

I hope this Q&A was both informative and enlightening. Great guy and we are so lucky to have him in Columbus. Carry that flag buddy.

 

 

 

 

 

Tonight begins the most beautiful time of year. The time of year filled with magic. Tonight starts the time of year when faces get furry and mullets make a comeback. Tonight begins the NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs.  With the playoffs come the highs and lows that lead people do one thing. That thing is drinking. A glass of wine here to celebrate or a can of beer that will catch your tears as your heart breaks into a million little hockey pucks because your team faltered.

So now I bring to you the first installment of “Hockey Shots”.  These installments were inspired by the recent NHL Draft Lottery Tweetup that happened in Columbus last night. My friend Cyrus held a competition to see who could come up with the best Columbus Blue Jackets inspired shot. For this installment I picked my top four favorite shot entries. Enjoy and drink responsibly.

 

COLUMBUS BLUE JACKETS SHOTS

 

Camsanity
submitted by @davecottone

1 part Cranberry
1 part Absolut
1 part Midori
Splash of 7-up

 

The Blue Line
submitted by @googlit

1 part Vodka
1 part Blue Curacao liquer
Lime Juice

 

Cannon Fire
submitted by @googlit

¾ shot glass amaretto
top with 151
set in beer glass
Fill Labatt to shot’s rim
Set on fire
Blow out and shoot

 

Controlled Chaos
this one is my favorite but I’m biased because I helped design it. @brettemichel and @imaraindancer

1 part Jim Beam
1 part Jack Daniels
1 part Dr. Pepper
Drop in a glass of Budweiser

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