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It’s official: Blue Jackets are the worst team in the NHL

Mar 25, 2012, 7:14 PM EDT

Chicago Blackhawks  v Edmonton Oilers Getty Images

The Columbus Blue Jackets took the lead twice on Sunday, but fell victim to a five-goal barrage from the Edmonton Oilers in the second period. To the surprise of no one, the Blue Jackets, who have only won twice all season when trailing after 40 minutes, ended up losing 6-3. As a result, Columbus now has the kind of peace of mind that no other team in the NHL has obtained. They know that their remaining games can’t help or hurt them from a rankings perspective, because no matter what they do, they will finish the season with the worst record in the league.

Of course, Edmonton won’t fare much better in 2011-12, but it’s games like this one that give them hope for the future. Even without 2010 first overall pick Taylor Hall available, the Oilers’ youth still played a prominent role in this victory. Calder Trophy contender Ryan Nugent-Hopkins registered two assists and sophomore breakout Jordan Eberle did just as well. 25-year-old rookie Chris VandeVelde netted his first NHL goal while Sam Gagner, who is still just 22, set a new career-high with his 17th goal of the campaign.

Gagner is of course best known for his four-goal, eight-point game on Feb. 2 and the hot streak to follow. While he’s fallen back to Earth since then, he has heated up lately with two goals and four points in his last four games.

The highlight of the game from Columbus’ perspective was probably Rick Nash scoring on a penalty shot which, at the time, game them a 2-1 lead. You can view his goal and the other game highlights below.

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Of course, if you’re a Blue Jackets fan, seeing Nash have a good game has to give you mixed feelings. Nash was looking to be dealt before the trade deadline and rather than hope to build a team around him, Columbus is probably just looking to squeeze as much as they can out of a Nash trade over the summer. But hey, at least the Blue Jackets are in a great position going into the draft lottery.

  1. bagjr387 - Mar 25, 2012 at 7:40 PM

    when the second worst team spanks the worst team, it doesnt look good for the worst team. hopefully a #1 overall pick will turn things around in columbus

    • phillyphever - Mar 25, 2012 at 7:56 PM

      I feel bad for the guy who’s picked #1. Columbus is a mess.

  2. greatminnesotasportsmind - Mar 25, 2012 at 11:18 PM

    Edmonton and Montreal are only 1 win from passing Minnesota!

  3. stakex - Mar 25, 2012 at 11:29 PM

    “but it’s games like this one that give them hope for the future”

    Yes, because beating the worst team in the league is some sort of accomplishment. While there certainly is hope for the future in Edmonton, this game does not at all show/represent that.

    As for the Blue Jackets, there isn’t much to say. They are awful, and aren’t likely to get much better any time soon. In fact, its almost a certainty that Rick Nash will be leaving town in the summer and unless his return is very high, there is no way that helps the BJ’s. If I was a Columbus fan, I would find a new team.

  4. eastcoastcynic - Mar 26, 2012 at 12:32 AM

    The Blue Jackets may have 2 first round draft choices–the second one that they acquired from LA in the Carter trade may be good for this season or next. Hopefully in addition to a Yakupov or a Forsberg, they can get another good forward prospect like a Faksa or Teravainen if they get the choice for this season.

    If I were a Columbus fan, I would be patient. They’ve got a losing team, but those fans are better off than those without NHL teams.

    • east96st - Mar 26, 2012 at 8:20 AM

      “If I were a Columbus fan, I would be patient. They’ve got a losing team, but those fans are better off than those without NHL teams.”

      Sadly, because of our owner and the complete disregard and even contempt he and the front office showers on the fans, you are wrong. We would actually be better off without a team than being stuck with THIS owner. Give us a competent owner and front office and you’ll see what a great hockey town this COULD be.

    • lostpuppysyndrome - Mar 26, 2012 at 3:17 PM

      In Columbus’ defense, they’ve had 12 years of patience. Time for some results.

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