The Columbus Blue Jackets will finally get the 2013-14 season underway on Friday, and have an excellent chance to build on their success from the 2013 season. The Blue Jackets will host the Calgary Flames, and in addition to Vezina Trophy winner Sergei Bobrovsky between the pipes they now boast a top line that could give opposing teams fits this season. Marian Gaborik joined the Blue Jackets at the trade deadline, scoring three goals and putting up eight points in 12 games. He now gets to play a full season with his new teammates, and will be joined on the top line by rookie Boone Jenner and Brandon Dubinsky. Jenner scored 45 goals and had 82 points for the OHL’s Oshawa Generals last season, and looked good in the preseason. Dubinsky will be looking to bounce back after scoring a career-low two goals last season.
The Blue Jackets saw many of their games go past regulation last season, and while they fared well in the shootout they still just barely missed out on a playoff spot. They ranked 25th in the league in goals for, and owe a lot of last season’s success to Bobrovsky’s ability to keep them in close games. This season, an ability to score more could very well help them to the postseason, and this top line should have a lot to do with that. Columbus won’t be sneaking up on anyone this season, but if their top line can score regularly they should be able to stay competitive in the Eastern Conference.