Soooo I live in columbus (or at least did and will again once I graduate college) and I have to admit, when the Blue Jackets came to town in 2001 I was excited only because it gave me an opportunity to follow the Avs. Been a fan since 96 where my first full hockey game I recall watching was Game 7 vs. Florida. But as I've grown older I've come to appreciate the Blue Jackets for what they've done for downtown Columbus. Unfortunately there's no sugar coating this, the Blue Jackets have sucked, and will continue to suck for what seems like forever. ESPN printed this article recently and I find it appalling just how dreadfull their rut is in. Thank god this hasn't happened to my Avs:
In 2007 Columbus City Center closed up and left downtown in a rut. There was literally NOTHING to do in the downtown area except for the Blue Jackets. At the time of its opening, City Center was Central Ohio's largest and most upscale shopping mall however as other malls built up in suburbs of Columbus, it quickly went under. With the Blue Jackets, the Arena District Downtown grew and expanded to connect with what we call "The Short North" along High Street. Since the malls closing, the Short North and the Arena District has brought in a massive amount of revenue and reignited interest in downtown Columbus. This now extends all the way from the Nationwide Arena to Ohio State's Campus where the hottest night scene is prime for directing traffic back and forth between all three regions of High Street since it runs from OSU to just outside Nationwide.
In esscence, Columbus needs the Blue Jackets and that means that as a city, we need them to be successful as much as that thought pains me (mainly because I don't want them to bring down the Avalanche). People are quick to blame that there is no market in Columbus. I think that's false, there is a substantial if not massive fan base here in Columbus. Yes, we love our OSU football but there is a reason why the Jackets don't play on Saturdays....you simply can't compete with college football. The experience of going to games in Columbus is enjoyable as well; Nationwide is a fantastic arena with great food nearby before games and afterward too. The bars are great as well.
The simple fact of the matter is that there is a line of blame for the Jackets to cirumnavegate the world twiceover. But where do we start? Fire the GM? Fire the coaches,? Fire the entire upper managment? maybe even trade Rick Nash? (To the avs of course. Do we move this team and forget Columbus? (which I don't think is an option due to some kind of city contract) After looking at their salary cap and comparing it to the Avs I can't help but feel that it is atrocious:
http://www.capgeek.com/charts.php?Team=13We don't pay our forwards anywhere near as much and we get production from them thats loads better than Columbus. The Jackets have a nasty habit in my opinion of signing veteran players past their prime that don't contribute in a manner that the Jackets need: Fedorov, Carter, even our own Adam Foote. The section of the ESPN Article that rips the rest of the Jackets roster is just sad; how much money can you spend and not get anything out of it? The 6th highest spending in the league?
Is there anyway to get this team back on track. As much of an Avs fan that I am, I still find myself at times rooting for the Jackets because their success means a better city for me to call home.