Well, in lieu of writing an introduction for tonight's tilt at the Washington Capitals, I’m gonna let Torts sum up the state of the Columbus Blue Jackets in his own words (quotes as relayed by Todd Jones of the Columbus Dispatch):
I'm not disappointed. I'm pissed.
We need to do everything better.
There’s nothing positive to say about our team right now based off last game.
Well then. To the highlights!
FIRST PERIOD HIGHLIGHTS
Your CBJ starters: Brandon Dubinsky, Cam Atkinson, Matt Calvert, Seth Jones, Ryan Murray, Sergei Bobrovsky
Power play for the Blue Jackets. Tom Wilson went off at 2:43 for tripping Dean Kukan behind Bobrovsky’s net.
Much better start for Columbus tonight.
Bobrovsky denied Jay Beagle on a two on one after a faceoff. Oliver Bjorkstrand was able to clear the danger.
The Capitals killed the power play.
Boone Jenner went to the locker room at 4:30 after getting hit in the mouth with a shot and he was absolutely gushing blood.
Columbus very much carried the play for the first 7 minutes, allowing only 2 shots.
Update on Jenner: he went over the Washington Capitals medical room. He had a LOT of blood coming from his mouth when he left the ice. He took a puck off the stick of David Savard straight to the face.
Mike Richards just missed tipping a shot from Dmitry Orlov into Bobrovsky’s net at 8:00.
Brandon Saad saw a shot saved from the slot at 9:15.
Washington had picked up the pace and possession, taking the lead on shots taken by the 13:00 mark.
And as I say that, the Jackets pushed back. The structure and pace of Columbus was much better tonight, and they had limited sloppy mistakes that plagued them in Nashville.
Capitals goal. Justin Williams put in a rebound at 16:30. After some nice passing from Washington, Williams buried his 22nd of the year. Williams was completely unmarked on the doorstep, totally a blown assignment. Assists to John Carlson and Nate Schmidt.
Blue Jackets goal! A quick response. Rene Bourque knocked the puck out of the air and Cam Atkinson gathered the puck and responded by firing a quick shot past Braden Holtby at 18:06. Assists to Rene Bourque and Gregory Campbell.
Beautiful pad save on Evgeny Kuznetsov with 20 seconds left in the period.
At the end of the first period, Columbus was tied with Washington 1-1. Shots favored Washington 13-12.
SECOND PERIOD HIGHLIGHTS
Cam Atkinson gained control of a turnover, but looking for Brandon Dubinsky he missed a golden chance from the slot.
Bobrovsky denied Marcus Johansson and Jason Chimera in quick succession at 2:45.
Washington power play. At 2:55 Cody Goloubef hauled down Jay Beagle, giving the Washington power play (second in the league) a chance with a man advantage.
Despite several chances, the Jackets killed the penalty.
Braden Holtby made a nice save on a Wennberg wrist shot.
Jackets power play. At 6:38, Tom Wilson went off for boarding Gregory Campbell.
Just an observation, but Washington’s power play is a million miles better than ours is. Maybe that’s why they’re second in the league and we’re, well, not.
UPDATE: Jenner to return at some point tonight after being struck in the mouth with a puck.
Washington killed the penalty, allowing no shots on goal.
Boone Jenner returned to the bench at the 10:00 mark, with a full cage on and a mouth full of stitches.
End to end action through the middle of the period.
First shift back and Boone Jenner went to the box for slashing Mike Richards at 12:39.
Boone Jenner, it was announced, had 20 stitches in his mouth and lost 2 or 3 teeth. And missed just 27 minutes of the game. Good lord.
Brandon Dubinsky caught a puck in the face from Alexander Ovechkin at 13:16. It actually appeared to hit his neck area.
The Jackets killed the penalty, allowing two shots.
TJ Oshie was in difficulty after a collision with Dubinsky in the last minute- appeared to be limping as he left the ice.
No real action as the second period ended. The score was tied 1-1 with Washington ourshooting Columbus 21-15.
THIRD PERIOD HIGHLIGHTS
Washington power play. At 1:00, Boone Jenner went off for holding the stick of Justin Williams. Boone was, to put it mildly, less than pleased with the call.
Washington had a nice chance when Seth Jones fell down, but Bobrovsky kept the net clean.
Columbus killed the power play. Three straight kills against the second best unit in the league. Not too shabby.
Capitals goal. Tom Wilson was able to backhand a rebound home at 3:46. After a Daniel Winnik shot and a Mike Richards deflection, Wilson was able to gather the puck and fire it home. Assists to Winnik and Richards. The entire sequence was started when Goloubef was trying to take a shot in the Washington zone and broke his stick, leading to an odd man rush.
Capitals power play. Scott Hartnell went off at 6:29 for … I honestly have no idea.
Penalty to Washington. After an offside whistle, Nicklas Backstrom shot the puck on Bobrovsky, leading to an unsportsmanlike conduct penalty at 7:20. There would be 1:09 of 4 on 4 hockey, followed by 51 seconds of a man advantage for Columbus.
2 blocks for Dalton Prout with a man down. Nice work from the defenseman.
Washington killed the brief man advantage for Columbus.
After 12 shots in the first period, Columbus was sitting at a grand total of 18 at the 10:30 mark of the third period. Six shots in 30 minutes isn’t great.
A 3 on 2 for Columbus was broken up when two Blue Jackets were in the same place entering the zone. You just don’t see Washington making mistakes like that.
Bourque saw a shot go just wide from in front of Holtby after a feed from Karlsson.
The 4th line has played well tonight.
Washington power play. Brandon Dubinsky went off for goaltender interference at 14:18. Holtby sold it and Brooks Orpik then dumped Dubinsky. Orpik or Holtby could’ve gotten called for penalties themselves.
Capitals goal. TJ Oshie tipped in a Matt Niskanen shot from the point at 14:26. Assists to Niskanen and Nicklas Backstrom.
Washington had firmly taken control of the game.
Capitals goal. With the net empty, Washington scored an empty netter. Nicklas Backstrom buried one at 17:35 to seal the game.
Washington had 17 shots in the third period. Columbus had 22 for the night.
Washington Capitals 4 Columbus Blue Jackets 1
*** Tom Wilson
** Nicklas Backstrom
* Braden Holtby
The penalty kill was a real positive for Columbus tonight. Despite giving one up (on a soft power play opportunity), the team looked solid against the second best unit in the league.
Sergei Bobrovsky played well. He controlled rebounds and made stellar saves. Typical Bob.
The Jackets responded as well as they could after Saturday’s debacle. Washington is just a much more talented team that Columbus is right now and in the third period that came through.
Boone Jenner is a warrior. He’s easily one of the toughest guys on the roster.
Congratulations to Washington for clinching the President’s Trophy.
The Jackets take the ice Thursday night in New York against the Islanders. Faceoff is at 7:00 EST.