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Jackets top Devils; clinch playoff berth

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We’re going to the playoffs for the 3rd time in franchise history, and first time since 2014

NHL: Columbus Blue Jackets at New Jersey Devils Ed Mulholland-USA TODAY Sports

THE JACKETS ARE GOING TO THE PLAYOFFS!

For just the third time in franchise history and first time in 3 years, thanks to a 4-1 defeat of the New Jersey Devils.

Alexander Wennberg was a late scratch due to lingering neck pain from that uncalled boarding penalty on Saturday. Lukas Sedlak entered the lineup for his first appearance since returning from his oblique injury. He made the most of the opportunity after Josh Anderson took a tripping penalty. Sedlak forced a turnover and had a shorthanded breakaway opportunity. He was fouled on the way in and earned his first career penalty shot attempt. He buried it to give the Jackets a 1-0 lead.

Later in the first, Matt Calvert took a tripping penalty himself, but once again the PK unit went on the offensive. Boone Jenner earned a takeaway in the neutral zone and carried the puck into the offensive zone himself. He held off three Devils while his teammates rushed to the zone. Jack Johnson got the puck and fired at the goal, and Boone was in position to send home the rebound.

Immediately after that, New Jersey won the faceoff and scored. It was a questionable goal, as it appeared Adam Henrique was offsides, and then that he made contact with Sergei Bobrovsky before the puck went in. The interference was not reviewed. The onsides call was challenged by John Tortorella, but the call was upheld and the goal stood.

In the second period, Josh Anderson earned a breakaway but after being tripped by Dalton Prout, the Jackets had another penalty shot attempt. Anderson was banged up by the foul, so the Jackets got to use an alternate shooter (despite New Jersey’s protests). The initial choice, Sam Gagner, was ineligible because he was not on the ice. Brandon Dubinsky had to take it instead, and he followed the same path as Sedlak.

The scoring was capped late in the third with Jenner scoring an empty net goal.

First Star: Jenner
Second Star: Anderson
Third Star: The entire defense. Lots of blocked shots and active sticks by all Jackets to break up any New Jersey scoring attempt.

Milestones:

Jack Johnson’s 700th career NHL game

3rd game in CBJ history with 2 shorthanded goals

3rd game in all of NHL history in which a team scored 2 penalty shot goals

First time in franchise history to reach 100 points

3rd playoff appearance in franchise history

Let’s celebrate!