The Columbus Blue Jackets came in winners of three straight games, looking to make it four straight with a win over the Pittsburgh Penguins. It wouldn’t be easy, but the Blue Jackets can play the type of game that gives the Penguins fits. It is only a matter of can they keep it up for a full three periods.
The atmosphere seemed to have an electricity to it, and the Blue Jackets fed off the crowd and went toe to toe with arguably the best team in hockey. Brandon Dubinsky opened up the scoring with a heck of a play, including some moves that are illegal in 48 states. The Penguins were able to strike back just a mere 1:28 later, when James Neal scored on the power play making it a 1-1 game. Dubinsky was stone-walled twice at point-blank range by Jeff Zatkoff to the dismay of the crowd. Boone Jenner drew a penalty with a little under 30 seconds left in the first, giving the Pens their 2nd power play of the period. The Blue Jackets killed off the rest of the period and it was all square after 20 minutes.
CBJ 1 Pens 1
Blue Jackets killed off the remaining penalty and really controlled the majority of the 2nd period, using good sustained offensive zone work. Blake Comeau and Ryan Johansen were turned aside as Zatfoff kept the Pens in the game. Neal tallied his second goal of the game, and the Blue Jackets couldn’t seem to buy a penalty. Boone Jenner played pretty well all game, he laid out Robert Bortuzzo then hustled to cause a turnover in the offensive zone, he then dished it to Corey Tropp. Tropp decided to go bonkers and deke the arena out of their skates on his way to tieing it at 2. The Blue Jackets finally got a power play, but could do nothing with it before the end of the period.
CBJ 2 Pens 2
The 3rd started with a lot of back and forth play, while the penalty kill came up big, early in the period. The Blue Jackets even got a short-handed chance but couldn’t capitalize. Remember the whole 60 minute conversation? Well the Blue Jackets couldn’t do it, Sidney Crosby scored with a WWE like assist from Fedor Tyutin as he plowed over Curtis McElhinney. The Pens top line could not be stopped as Chris Kunitz scored a power play goal to make it 4-2 Pens. The Blue Jackets committed too many penalties and ultimately it cost them the game. Neal decided 2 goals wasn’t enough, he wanted a hat trick and he got himself a hat trick. I figure this is when the rear ends started to evacuate their seats at a fast rate. Nikita Nikitin showed there is no quit in this Blue Jackets team as he scored a meaningless goal to make the final score a little less lopsided at 5-3.
CBJ 3 Pens 5
The Columbus Blue Jackets played roughly 50 minutes of a type of game that can beat the Pittsburgh Penguins, too bad they needed a full 60 minute effort. They were served another piece of humble pie by the Penguins, and hopefully this will fuel them for the rest of the season, on what it takes to be a winner in this league.
Buy ‘em High:
- Brandon Dubinsky – Scored the first goal of the game, had a lot of heart and played with an intensity all night.
- Corey Tropp – Amazing moves through the Pens defense, and a filthy move to beat the goaltender.
- Boone Jenner – I love the way he plays, almost like a Jared Boll with a lot more offensive upside.
Sell ‘em Low
- Curtis McElhinney – Is a good backup, and I don’t want to seem all woe as us, but Curtis is not the goalie to take us to the next level. We need Sergei Bobrovsky back, and we need him to be BOB.
- Defense’s passing – Just not sharp on that end, especially Nikitin tonight, the turnovers in our own zone can stop any game now.
- Pittsburgh Penguins – Really Penguins, really? You don’t have enough of a lead in the Metro that you couldn’t have thrown us a bone?