Columbus’ hopes for the bid dimmed when the May referendum failed. However, Nationwide announced on May 31, 1997, that it would finance the $150-million arena. Subsequently, on June 25, 1997, the NHL announced that Columbus would receive a new franchise. On June 23, 2000, the NHL’s two newest teams, the Blue Jackets and the Minnesota Wild, took part in the 2000 NHL Expansion Draft in Calgary, Alberta. Under the draft’s rules, 26 of the NHL’s active 28 teams were allowed to protect one goaltender, five defensemen, and nine forwards, or two goaltenders, three defensemen, and seven forwards. The Atlanta Thrashers and Nashville Predators both had their full rosters protected because they were the two newest teams, only being in existence for one and two years, respectively. Both the Blue Jackets and Wild had to use their first 24 selections on three goaltenders, eight defensemen, and thirteen forwards. Their final two picks could be players of any position.
Nationwide Arena is a large multi-purpose arena, in Columbus, Ohio, USA. Since completion in 2000, the arena has served as the home of the Columbus Blue Jackets of the National Hockey League. Seating capacity for Ice hockey is 18,500.
Prior to the start of the 2007 – 2008 season, the Blue Jackets organization brought a hand-made replica 1857 Napoleon cannon into Nationwide Arena. The cannon is “fired” at home games whenever:
the Blue Jackets take the ice at the start of the game
the Blue Jackets score a goal
the Blue Jackets win the game
It was fired 164 times in its inaugural season (41 home games, 20 home victories, 103 goals scored at home). The title line of “For Those About to Rock (We Salute You)” by AC/DC is played when the cannon is fired followed by the chorus of “The Whip” by Locksley.
The Columbus Blue Jackets are a professional ice hockey team based in Columbus, Ohio. They are members of the Metropolitan Division of the Eastern Conference of the National Hockey League (NHL).
The Blue Jackets were founded as an expansion team in 2000. The team qualified for the Stanley Cup playoffs for the first time in 2009.
2000 – Present / National Hockey League
2000 – Present / Columbus Blue Jackets
Blue Jackets – Picked out of 14,000 entries in a contest for the Columbus franchise, Blue Jackets won the vote over the second-place Justice. The name “celebrates patriotism, pride and the rich Civil War history in the state of Ohio and, more specifically, the city of Columbus.” Ohio contributed more residents to the Union Army than any other state during the Civil War. The name and logo are reflective of the area’s pride in its place in American history.
Stanley Cup 0
2000 – Present / Nationwide Arena
2000 – Present / John P. McConnell
99 Wayne Gretzky
*Blue is this team’s history