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Highlight Recap: Game #68, Penguins 3, Jackets 2

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Bob is back, but it's not enough as Pittsburgh comes away with the win

Aaron Doster-USA TODAY Sports

First Period

- Sergei Bobrovsky is BACK…and committed a penalty 95 seconds into the game, shooting the puck 50 feet over the glass after hitting a few bodies trying to clear the puck the first time. David Clarkson served the delay of game.

- Weird penalty kill as Bob and William Karlsson lost their sticks. Jackets killed it off, though, with minimal danger (one shot) from Pittsburgh.

- The light went on behind the night on a weird bounce that got nowhere near the line and the puck headed the other way…

- GOAL! Jared Boll took a soft feed from Rene Bourque, skated in on a two-on-one and laid a beautiful pass for Gregory Campbell to cash in for his third goal of the year. That was the Jackets’ first shot of the game and hey, Jared Boll takes a ton of crap but it’s good to see him (and Campbell) get on the board. 1-0 Columbus, 14:55 left in the first. Excellent start.

- Jackets nearly scored on the next possession and continued to buzz. CBJ rolling four lines throughout the opening frame.

- The first real fireworks erupted with 6:58 left in the first. Bourque hit Bryan Rust and the official’s arm went up, Ian Cole retaliated and a bunch of shoving ensued.

- Once the dust settled via roughing penalties, the Penguins got a two-minute power play that they promptly converted from a Kris Letang shot from the point. 1-1 game with 5:37 left in the first period. Evgeni Malkin picked up his 30th assist, Phil Kessel his 24th.

- Soon after, Olli Maata headed to the box for high-sticking for a Jackets PP. Little chance in the first minute of the advantage but Columbus struggled to set up shop in the Pittsburgh zone and the power play expired without much fanfare.

- 1-1 game after one period of play, Pittsburgh with a 10-8 shot advantage.

Second Period

- Penguins wasted little time in taking the lead to start the second. Chris Kunitz potted one from the crease after a wide shot bounced off the boards and danced around in the blue paint for Kunitz. Not an ideal way to begin the second. 2-1 just 45 seconds into the second period.

- Soon after the goal, Evgeni Malkin and Dalton Prout collided in a routine, run-of-the-mill puck battle behind the net. Malkin pulled up and appeared to favor his shoulder, but he stayed on the bench and did not head into the dressing room. Cause for concern for Pittsburgh.

- GOAL! Cam Atkinson finished off a mini-breakaway (with a defender draped all over him) for a 2-2 tie. No. 13 came off the bench on a broken play and undressed Marc-Andre Fleury for his 24th goal of the year. Ryan Murray and Gregory Campbell picked up assist.

- …aaaand the Penguins responded pretty quickly after that, with Carl Hagelin finally finding the net after three consecutive shots. Bob’s rusty and giving up a lot of rebounds, but you gotta get the puck out of there. 3-2 Penguins, 15:13 left in the second.

- Atkinson found himself with another breakaway, only to see Fleury lunge and poke it away. Pens then buzzed around Bob for awhile…firewagon hockey.

- Jackets really didn’t create much offense through most of the second. Little sustained pressure and not many great scoring opportunities.

- Some commotion with 5:24 left in the period…we haven’t seen a ton of that after the explosion in the first.

- Jackets went on the power play when Sidney Crosby closed his hand on the puck during a faceoff. Columbus on the advantage with 4:23 to go in the second. Malkin gone, by the way. So that injury did turn out to be serious.

- Not much on the power play. That’s all I have to say about that.

- Rene Bourque goes off at 18:35 for interference. Period ends with time left and it’s 3-2 Pittsburgh after two periods.

Third Period

- Not much to report through the first 10 minutes aside from some thunderous hits from David Savard and Dalton Prout. Pens announcers carp and whine about the severity, but this is big-boy hockey and it’s still March.

- Pens seem sore here (Bryan Rust goes into the net and comes up struggling after Prout fishes him out, much to the chagrin of everyone east of Marietta). That said, they’re winning.

- With 5:14 left we’ve got pushing and shoving near the CBJ net. Rust was in the middle with Scott Hartnell…matching unsportsmanlike conducts for 4-on-4 as we head down the home stretch.

- Quizzical play from Ryan Murray and Seth Jones with three minutes left (Jones had not been good all night), taking awkward routes to dumped pucks and a weirdly lazy clear.

- Bob skated to the bench with 1:35 to go…Penguins eventually win, 3-2. Thanks for playing.

Final Thoughts

- Not enough. Bob was rusty, but he made 28 saves. Gregory Campbell scored a goal and Cam Atkinson potted one on a breakaway. Probably need more from your top six.

- Not a night to remember for Ryan Murray and Seth Jones.

- Jackets outhit the Pens 26-13, win 54 percent of the faceoffs. Cool. Pittsburgh outshoots the Jackets 31-27.

- Campbell leads Columbus with a goal and an assist in 9:09. Good for you, buddy. Brandon Dubinsky logged 21:59, because it’s Pittsburgh and you’d be a big dummy not to.

- Next up: Tampa Bay on Sunday at 3 p.m. at home.