Saturday's season finale against the Islanders promises to be the end of an era. The chances are high Saturday will be Rick Nash's last game as a Columbus Blue Jacket. Whether the Captain makes an appearance is now in doubt. One of the team's "learning men," GM Scott Howson, announced today that a back injury suffered by Nash might keep him out of the season finale.
What remains to be seen is whether Saturday will also mark Scott Howson's last game as GM of the franchise. Since his ill-conceived press conference announcing that Nash had requested a trade, Scott Howson has been doing his best impersonation of the Invisible Man. One would have thought he was off in Hollywood shooting a big screen version of the hit TV show Frasier as little as Howson has been around lately. Howson's bosses have also been tight lipped. Team president Mike Priest has restrained himself from declaring that "Howson hockey is Blue Jackets hockey!"
But soon enough it will be abundantly clear whether change is coming or whether we should just hit snooze on Sunday if we hear Sonny and Cher on our alarm clocks. Under the stewardship of the current management team they spent a record amount on player salaries to end up dead last in the league by a country mile. And while we are thankful to have the All Star Game, it is bittersweet when there is a good chance that the Jackets will have no player representing them in the game as the guy who was most likely to do so was so unimpressed with the "plan" the management team set out in January that he immediately asked that they "consider" trading him in the best interest of his career.
Saturday marks our last opportunity this year as fans to make a statement with regards to what we think needs to be done to get this team moving in the right direction. Let's go out there and make a loud statement in one voice. Do so in a respectful manner, but be direct. We'll again be asking for signatures on the petition to have Howson and Priest removed from their posts before and after the game. We'll have 200 pre-printed signs and another 200 poster boards for you to write your own messages to ownership and management. Come join us this one last time this season and help us send a message to ownership that we love the team, but hate the direction.