The homestand continues! The Columbus Blue Jackets remained at home on Tuesday night taking on the visiting Boston Bruins. The Bruins got some help with their lineup, welcoming back Patrice Bergeron in a late addition to the squad. Meanwhile, Curtis McElhinney was activated for the Blue Jackets, though he would start on the bench as Coach Tortorella chose to trot out the hot hand of Joonas Korpisalo. Brandon Dubinsky, despite feeling under the weather, was a go on the night.
FIRST PERIOD- FINDING THEIR LEGS
Boston, quite simply, dominated the opening moments of the game. They controlled the pace of play, dominated possession, and forced Ryan Murray to take a penalty just 3:29 into the game. The Bruins then proceeded to generate 5 shots on goal on a chaotic power play opportunity. To their credit, the Blue Jackets killed the penalty, which featured numerous blocked shots and Joonas Korpisalo losing his stick for approximately 20 seconds.
After a chaotic few minutes, Columbus seemed to find their legs. The Blue Jackets began making crisper passes, which led to some chances and, eventually, the opening goal. After a slick backhand from Scott Hartnell in the neutral zone, Alexander Wennberg was hooked as he split the defenders, drawing a penalty shot. Wennberg went to his backhand, burying his shot over Tuukka Rask’s glove and putting the Jackets up 1-0.
The Bruins would respond in short order. After Seth Jones made a poor pass to clear the zone, Patrice Bergeron was able to block the pass and carry it in on Korpisalo. Bergeron wasted no time putting the shot past the Finnish rookie, knotting the score at one.
The first period ended with little action. Scary moment as the period ended. Tuukka Rask, David Savard, and Matt Belesky were involved in a collision where Rask’s head snapped backward. After remaining on the ice for several minutes, Rask was able to continue.
End of 1- Blue Jackets 1 Bruins 1
SECOND PERIOD- STALEMATE
Scott Hartnell had a chance to retake the lead for Columbus early, but fired high and wide. Rask was moving the wrong way and would’ve been beaten cleanly had Hartnell hit the net. Following that chance, the Boston Bruins took control as they did in the first period. Ryan Spooner had a breakaway broken up by Fedor Tyutin. Boston outshot Columbus 4-1 early, and drew another penalty at 6:51 as Brandon Dubinsky went off for holding.
Matt Calvert saw a shorthanded breakaway denied by Rask on the Dubinsky penalty kill. Tyler Randell then went off for high sticking, though the Bruins were able to kill it in short order, allowing no shots on goal. Brandon Saad drew another penalty at 11:56, though this one was short lived. 10 seconds later, Scott Hartnell took an absolutely unnecessary high sticking penalty against Zdeno Chara. There was little in the way of scoring chances to end the second period.
End of 2- Blue Jackets 1 Bruins 1
THIRD PERIOD- SLEEPWALKING THROUGH THE END OF REGULATION
There are periods where nothing happens, and then there’s the third period Tuesday night. Columbus, to their credit, did not get outskated early in the third period. The Blue Jackets managed to skate with the Bruins, though neither team mustered dangerous scoring chances. The Blue Jackets went on the power play at 8:00 after Nick Foligno was hauled down on a half breakaway by Kevan Miller. Despite shouts from the crowd for another penalty shot, the ref instead gave a power play to Columbus. The only highlight of the power play was Alexander Wennberg walking through the entire Bruins penalty kill, only to be denied by Rask.
Nick Foligno saw a backhand denied at 14:15 following a solid shift by the 4th line. Brad Marchand just missed a tip in at 14:45. That was pretty much it for the highlights for the third period. It was a slow, stop and start period, featuring a lot of icing and offsides calls.
End of regulation- Blue Jackets 1 Bruins 1
OVERTIME- AT LEAST IT ENDED QUICKLY
Following a poor play by Seth Jones, Loui Eriksson was able to tap home the game winner. Jones lost track of Eriksson, leaving him completely unmarked at the back post. It was a fitting end to the game, as Jones had played poorly for most of the night, never looking really comfortable on the ice against the physical Bruins.
FINAL: Boston Bruins 2 Columbus Blue Jackets 1 (OT)
Alexander Wennberg played an excellent game last night. He is continuing to develop into a player that must be accounted for on every single shift. He was noticeable every time he stepped onto the ice.
For as good as Wennberg played, Seth Jones played that poorly. He looked tentative, reactive, and lost on several possessions. Both goals against were directly attributable to Jones’ mistakes. He was bound to have a let-down at some point. Here’s hoping he bounces back strong on Friday.
Nick Foligno had a few chances, but still just can’t buy a goal.
The Blue Jackets remain at home on Friday night to take on the Buffalo Sabres. Faceoff is at 7:00 EST.