Detroit Red Wings v Columbus Blue Jackets

Earlier this season, I had a very brief sit down with Columbus and explained a reality: Detroit is just not that into you. As a rival, I mean.

The Wings once had a rivalry with Colorado that mattered, so I guess they might consider them a top opponent. They once had one with Chicago, so there’s that too. I think they might even consider St. Louis a rival. Regardless, I don’t think they’ve historically had you very high on their list of teams they’re concerned about.

Why’s that, you ask?

According to Merriam-Webster’s Dictionary “rivalry” is defined as “not that.”

I did a little check to ensure that was right, and check this out – it’s never been close. Chart time!


Season CBJ DET Diff
00-01 71 111  40
01-02 57 116  59(!)
02-03 69 110  41
03-04 62 109  47
05-06 74 124  50
06-07 73 113  40
07-08 80 115  35
08-09 92 112  20
09-10 79 102  23
10-11 81 104  23
11-12 65 102  37

Total points since the Columbus Blue Jackets have existed:

CBJ:    803 points
Det:    1218 points
Difference:  415 points, meaning Detroit has finished ahead of Columbus by an average of 37.7 points-per-season. Being an expansion team explains the early days, but still, it’s never really been close. Also, please note that the Red Wings have cleared 100 points every season since Y2K.

This year the Blue Jackets sit in the final playoff spot, one point ahead of their “rival” Detroit, with Red Wings beating ferociously in their rear-view mirror.

cbj det 2

How refreshing that must be.

Remaining opponents:

Detroit: Los Angeles (home), Dallas (home), Nashville (road)
Columbus: Dallas (road), Nashville (home)

The Blue Jackets may get in, they may not. But either way, this year’s team has accomplished something more than every previous Columbus team – they’ve done more than just get on Detroit’s radar, they’ve become a significant problem for them. And after all this time, that ain’t worth nothin’.

Comments (7)

  1. now if only they could come up with a positive goal differential for one season…

  2. You’ve got the Wings schedule shuffled a little, they play Nashville at Home and finish on the road at Dallas.

  3. I’m not so sure that it is the total points that matter so much as how they play each other head-to-head that determines a rivalry, though I expect that the results would be similar. Sometimes lesser teams can just “bring it” against a certain opponent…that’s grounds for a rivalry.

    That said, the other (main) way that rivalries form/improve/solidify is playoff matchups – obviously not a factor here.

  4. I just think it would be cool solely because it’s the BLUE Jackets and the RED Wings. Seriously, it’s like it’s meant to be.

  5. 3 questions:

    Is John Davidson part of the reason for the team’s relative success? Is it too early to say? The guys is a winner as everyone knows.

    How funny would it be if Nash and the Rangers miss, but Gaborik and the Jackets make it?

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