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in the Crease
Pierre McGuire
March 08, 2004
In one of the best games of the season the Blue Jackets overcame a 2-0 deficit last Saturday to beat the Avalanche for the first time in franchise history, 5-4 in overtime. Columbus right wing David Vyborny was the offensive star with a goal and four assists, but the big-body presence of Rick Nash was the difference. Nash didn't have a point, but he took the pressure off his teammates by battling with Colorado defensemen Adam Foote and Rob Blake. Nash is the league's top goal scorer, but his unselfish play and willingness to compete down low are what make him so valuable. On the game-winning goal, it was Nash who was posted up just to the left of Avs goalie Philippe Sauve....
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March 08, 2004

In The Crease

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In one of the best games of the season the Blue Jackets overcame a 2-0 deficit last Saturday to beat the Avalanche for the first time in franchise history, 5-4 in overtime. Columbus right wing David Vyborny was the offensive star with a goal and four assists, but the big-body presence of Rick Nash was the difference. Nash didn't have a point, but he took the pressure off his teammates by battling with Colorado defensemen Adam Foote and Rob Blake. Nash is the league's top goal scorer, but his unselfish play and willingness to compete down low are what make him so valuable. On the game-winning goal, it was Nash who was posted up just to the left of Avs goalie Philippe Sauve....

Because of a growing number of head shots and cheap shots there is a feeling among general managers that the instigator rule—which heavily penalizes anyone who instigates a fight—should be relaxed. Last Thursday two incidents brought the issue into focus. The Senators' Martin Havlat intentionally hit the Flyers' Mark Recchi in the face with the shaft of his stick; Havlat received a five-minute penalty and was ejected. He was later suspended for two games by the league. Also, the Canucks' Jarkko Ruutu slammed the Sharks' Mike Ricci into the boards from behind, shelving Ricci for several games; Ruutu was not penalized. Some G.M.'s think that if players were more fearful of retaliation after they delivered dirty hits, most of the cheap stuff would go away.

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