The Columbus Blue Jackets once again collapse in the final frame as the Vancouver Canucks defeat a deflated Jackets squad 3-2.
A familiar situation for those who have watched the Columbus Blue Jackets over the course of the 2018-2019 NHL season, the Jackets once again fail to close out an opponent to lose closely in the third period. This team has just struggled through this season defensively.
Also familiar to many is the Jackets defensive side giving up 3+ goals, which at this point should not come as a surprise. This team has failed many times to address problems on the back end. The goaltending situation hasn’t helped this problem as the Jackets cannot rely on either Sergei Bobrovsky, or Joonas Korpisalo to keep the puck out of the net.
The Jackets started this game promising with Seth Jones scoring right out of the gate, less than a minute in, to give the Jackets a quick 1-0 advantage. This goal was able to hold through two boringly, offensive-less periods.
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Hard to watch at points, the lack of offensive movement has started to become a problem for the Jackets. Failing to put any results on the board against Washington on Saturday, the offense has stepped down in a big way in the month of December. The Jackets lost their only offensive power fight against Calgary last week.
Has anyone even seen Artemi Panarin this year? It is almost as if he has left this team mentally already, even though he leads the team in assists, he has been invisible on the ice especially in big moments.
Oliver Bjorkstrand finally found the back of the net for only the third time this season. Bjorkstrand was supposed to be the breakout star for the Jackets this season but has failed to live up to his expectations so far. Including a string of scratches at points.
Another big issue I see right now on the back end is the health and play of Zach Werenski. He says he is fully healthy, but so far it looks as though he is not playing like his former self. He also is taking a beating wherever he goes on the ice, and spends too much time playing rover. Ryan Murray has stepped up in most cases, but until Werenski stops letting players fly behind him, the defense is going to be an issue.
Korpisalo looked great for two full periods, and while that is refreshing, he got into his own head after giving up the tying goal with less than 3 minutes remaining. This would lead to him not covering his post and letting Jake Virtanen score the game winner with just above a minute remaining.