Steve Mason just recorded his 8th shut out of the season against the Edmonton Oilers. But the bigger story tonight is Raffi Torres, who netted the only goal in the Blue Jackets 1-0 win over the 8th place Oilers. This goal was huge on many levels. I'll be blunt, Raffi hasn't played well lately. This goal may give him some confidence moving forward. If we're going to make noise in the playoffs, we need a guy like him chipping in goals from the 3rd line. Also, it was against his former mates, the Edmonton Oilers, who we traded with in the swap the send Brule to Edmonton.
The first period was fairly boring compared to the next two -- just 14 shots between both teams -- but the Jackets managed play well and didn't give up an early goal like they have the last few games. In the second, it was all-out assault on Roloson as the Jackets peppered him and outshot the Oilers 17-5. But, as seems to happen a lot against Roloson, the Jackets couldn't get one behind him.
On to the third, where Raffi was certainly cheating behind the Edmonton defense -- it looked like it was on an EDM line change -- and he took off on a breakaway, waited patiently for Roloson to open up the 5-hole and scored what would be the game-winning goal.
The new lines put in place by Coach Hitchcock looked pretty good, passing well, cycling the puck, and getting shots on goal. New Blue Jacket Chris Gratton was huge on the ice, throwing hits and creating havoc with Dorsett and Murray.
The only negative point of the night would be the Jackets inability to finish. This is a game that could have been 1-0 in the Oilers favor. Ultimately, the Jackets got that goal, and it's all it took, which boosts them up to 68 points, 3 points above 7th place Minnesota.
On to Vancouver!