Wisniewski's return key for Columbus
The hammer isn't coming today, said a calm Scott Howson. The big, dramatic move -- the trade, the coach firing, the shakeup to change the fortunes of the Columbus Blue Jackets -- isn't on the verge of happening despite a league- and franchise-worst 0-7-1 start.
"It's not a fair evaluation of the team or proper evaluation of the team until we see the pieces all here," the general manager said. "Having James Wisniewski and Jeff Carter play together -- that starts to look like the team we assembled in the summer."
With Carter sill injured, Howson won't get them both back Tuesday, but the evaluation of the Blue Jackets takes a giant step forward with Wisniewski's return to the lineup against the Detroit Red Wings tonight. Wisniewski was suspended for the first eight games of the regular season for his hit on Cal Clutterbuck during the preseason. He never imagined his team wouldn't win a game while he was sitting, but now he has a chance to be the difference, to shock this team into a turnaround. With Carter's fractured foot adding him to a list of six other players injured, Wisniewski is the best hope to breathe life into the Blue Jackets.
"It's been a whirlwind, we need to stop the tailspin, start the engines and revamp," Wisniewski said during a Monday phone conversation. "Sometimes a new body coming into the locker room creates a different kind of energy."
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