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614Sports: CBJ on thin ice, remarkably unremarkable soccer kit

jimmy lentz

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Blue Jackets Will Need to Show Full Mettle Tonight

The CBJ have lost three games in a row.

“Oh, *enter choice phrase here*”

After four of the five games in the first-round playoff series against the Washington Capitals have gone into overtime, the Columbus Blue Jackets are on thin ice as Game 6 approaches at Nationwide Arena later today.

The Capitals took a 3-2 series lead this past Saturday afternoon in OT (the protocol), courtesy of a goal from #19 Nicklas Backstrom.

However, the back-and-forth nature of the game, which included multiple ties and lead changes, provides hope for Columbus fans after a lackluster performance in Game 4.

#11 Matt Calvert’s breakaway finish in the second period for his second goal of the game included a highlight-worthy spin move (of a certain kind) against Washington’s goalkeeper #70 Braden Holtby that was quite the feat to pull-off with the narrowest of windows to squeeze the puck in the net.

Responding to a question during his postgame interview, CBJ head coach John Tortorella said, “We’ll be back here for Game 7.”

Visualization is half the battle.

The Columbus Blue Jackets host the Washington Capitals tonight at Nationwide Arena at 7:30 p.m. on Fox Sports Ohio in a must-win Game 6 of the first-round in the NHL Eastern Conference playoffs.

Crew SC’s Parley at MAPFRE Stadium

Not that parley, but one involving a remarkably unremarkable soccer kit.

With chances to collect three points at home against the New England Revolution—including #28 Niko Hansen who slid into the Revolution’s net in the 42nd minute while dramatically missing the ball by mere inches, a #4 Jonathan Mensah header that hit the crossbar early into the second half and a deflection off a Revolution defender that hit the post in the final play of the match—Crew SC took one-point in the right direction.

And in this effort, #11 Gyasi Zardes revealed an important scoring tool in his utility belt by cutting inside from the left, creating just enough space from his defender to perfectly curl the ball into the far post in the 43rd minute from just inside New England’s 18. Having a forward who is comfortable scoring with a range of around 20 yards will pay offensive and creative dividends as the season progresses.

Plus, former Crew goalkeeper Brad Friedel and Crew defender Mike Lapper (New England Revolution head coach and assistant coach) returned to face their former club. The city could use their defensive skills to keep the Crew in Columbus.

P.S. I understand that Parley sponsored the white eco-friendly Adidas kits with black accents for this past weekend’s match for Columbus to celebrate Earth Day, but it seemed like a subtle move that could’ve been orchestrated by Crew SC owner/investor/operator and chairman/villain Anthony Precourt and MLS Commissioner Don Garber to publicly try to erase the Black & Gold legacy from the Columbus Crew.

#SaveTheCrew

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Sports

Columbus is a frontrunner to host return of the NHL in proposed plan

Mike Thomas

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With some teams telling players to report for workouts on May 15, the future of the current NHL season is still anything but certain. For now, it seems hockey commissioner Gary Bettman is eyeing a a plan to finish out regular season play by centralizing games at four locations. According to a report from the New York Post, Columbus and the facilities at Nationwide Arena are among the frontrunners being considered to host one of these proposed "quadrants," should the NHL resume play this summer.

Hockey blog thehockeywriters.com offers a deep-dive into the many factors that have put Columbus on the short list of candidates for this modified NHL season, including the abundance of hotels in the area of Nationwide Arena, the more-than-adequate facilities of the arena itself, and the encouragingly low number of Covid cases in Franklin County.

While it's still way, way too early to say whether or not this plan will move forward, it's encouraging nonetheless to see Columbus recognized as a frontrunner for the return of national televised sports. Just don't count on sitting in the stands with 80k of your fellow fans anytime soon.

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Sports

Memorial Tourney gets mid-summer date but will fans be allowed?

614Now

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It may be a little early to break out the polo shirt and comfy walking shoes, but the good news is that one the city's most visible sporting events will be held this year after all. The big question remains: will Gov. DeWine allow fans to attend?

Thursday, the PGA Tour announced The Memorial Tournament will play the week of July 13-19 at Muirfield Village Golf Club and feature an increased field from 120 to 144 players. The invitational’s one-time expanded field size allowance will provide additional playing opportunities for touring professionals in light of the TOUR’s reduced schedule.

“This is an unprecedented time in our world, as well as the world of sports,” said Founder and Host Jack Nicklaus. “I can’t emphasize enough the message related to doing your part by social distancing and helping our nation and world by slowing this pandemic. But while we all need to come together and be strong, we also need to be understanding and flexible."

Recognizing Governor DeWine’s Ohio Stay at Home order and public gatherings ban guidelines currently in place, the Memorial will proceed with an understanding that its operation may require alterations. The Memorial Tournament presented by Nationwide will continue to offer patron badges, enhanced with a special offer that includes honoring original presale badge rates – starting at $185 for a weekly patron badge – and a complimentary $20 merchandise card (limit one per order, per household) redeemable at all on-site golf shops during Tournament week.

The Tournament plans to monitor the State of Ohio COVID-19 regulations and will employ changes relative to patron access if needed. If it is determined that the Memorial Tournament presented by Nationwide will be staged without patrons, a full refund policy will be implemented.

“This has been a couple months we would soon like to forget, but hopefully we can make this a summer to remember," added Nicklaus.

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News

Goodbye Yellow and Black? Columbus Crew could change name

614now Staff

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With the announcement of the new downtown stadium in the post-"Save the Crew" era, the future of Columbus Crew SC seemed secure.

Now, a report from The Dispatch is once against casting doubt on the club's continued existence—at least in its current form. According to "sources close to the Crew’s front office," management is giving serious thought to changing the team name, colors, and logo by the time the new stadium opens in the summer of 2021.

For commentary on the situation, including a statement from a team spokesperson, read the full rundown at The Dispatch.

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