On Tuesday afternoon, the Columbus Blue Jackets followed Monday night’s 6-2 victory over the San Jose Sharks in a bit of an unexpected way. The team decided to part ways with general manager Scott Howson, ultimately being replaced by Finnish Jarmo Kekalainen.
Thursday night will kick off a new era in Columbus.
The Jackets travel to California to take on the defending Stanley Cup champion Los Angeles Kings, in what will be the second matchup of the season between these two clubs. Los Angeles cam out on top during that meeting by a score of 4-2.
Columbus will look to get their new general manager off to an impressive start, while also looking for their first winning streak of the season. They currently hold a record of 4-7-2 with 10 points on the season, tying them for last in the Western Conference with, you guessed it, the Kings.
Kekalainen is the first European GM in NHL history and despite their record, wouldn’t it be a terrific start to his tenure with a victory over the reigning champions? Columbus, though once again a bottom feeder out West, has been playing much improved hockey this season. They have been hanging tough with almost all of their opponents, and will look to feed off of their dominating and most impressive victory of the season from Monday night. However, if the Jackets can come out of the Staples Center victorious, it’ll prove that they’re victory over the Sharks may not have been a fluke.
It’ll certainly be interesting to see if there are any adjustments to the team’s attitude now that a new GM is under center.