This was supposed to be the season that the goal-starved Blue Jackets took some pressure off their franchise goaltender, Steve Mason.

The team went on an offseason spending spree and acquired high-priced punch in the form of center Jeff Carter and defenseman James Wisniewski.

But the pour-it-on Blue Jackets have yet to materialize. Mason, often the victim of wave after wave of odd-man rushes and meager goal support, has paid the price.

His mediocre numbers of the past two seasons dipped during a horrendous autumn start. That led to a 12-game stretch on the bench when backup Curtis Sanford took over as the starter.