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Blue Jackets Schedule: Division Leading Chicago Highlights Short Week

For more on the Blue Jackets, visit SB Nation's The Cannon.

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The Columbus Blue Jackets are off to a dismal start to the 2011-12 NHL season, but this week is a chance to rest and prepare for the rest of the year going forward. Columbus has only a pair of games this week, both of them at home at Nationwide Arena.

Thursday evening the division leading Chicago Blackhawks come to town for their first meeting with Columbus. The Blackhawks have already earned 19 points on the season and they lead the Central Divison by three points over Nashville. Chicago sits 14 points ahead of Columbus headed into this week.

On Saturday night the newest team int he NHL comes to town as the Winnipeg Jets come to town for the first time. Winnipeg, of course, used to be the Atlanta Thrashers, but the franchise moved north to Canada in the offseason. Winnipeg is also struggling on the year with just 12 points from 12 games, but they have gained five points in their last four.

SB Nation's The Cannon has produced a few thoughts on how the Blue Jackets can improve going forward:

As I mentioned recently, the lack of success this season cuts deeper than every before, because there was such an overwhelming amount of optimism coming out of the summer. The biggest question was in net, but I think most of thought the team would be ok, albeit with a handful of 6-5 or 5-4 victories along the way.

Photographs by spatulated, Triple Tri, and chrischappelear used in background montage under Creative Commons. Thank you.