Could Columbus be cursed?

Frankly I don't know what other explanation there might be for all of the bad luck the Blue Jackets have endured this season.

Among the leaders in games missed due to injury. Derick Brassard, the leading rookie scorer at the time, injures a shoulder in the first "fight" of his NHL career. They're also down a starting goaltender (who was horrible when healthy) in Pascal Leclaire and a backup in Fredrik Norrena who was so inept he left for the KHL.

Now, their star rookie, a 20-year-old goaltender right out of junior and on pace to win the Calder Trophy and contend for the Vezina has the kissing disease:

Turns out Blue Jackets rookie Steve Mason is battling more than just a heavy workload.

General manager Scott Howson confirmed late last night to The Dispatch that Mason has been suffering from mononucleosis for three to four weeks.

At the moment, the Blue Jackets are on pace for 87 points, which would be seven more than their best-ever finish and close to a playoff berth. For the first time ever it looks like they'll stay in the postseason race beyond February, and now this.

Columbus is a great defensive team and has a lot of pluck, but they're not going anywhere with backup Wade Dubielewicz between the pipes. The franchise desperately needs its first trip to the playoffs to win back a fan base that's been dwindling, year by year, and can't afford more time in the wilderness.

Mason started his 18th straight game last night and has looked out of gas lately. That's not a good sign.

I think they're cursed.

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