The Jackets made two lineup changes before hosting the Montreal Canadiens. Scott Harrington was scratched for Ryan Murray’s return and Joonas Korpisalo got the start in net.
Here’s what happened.
Eric Robinson opened the scoring less than 90 seconds into the game as the Jackets started on the front foot.
With 3:29 remaining, the Jackets gave up the puck in the defensive zone and allowed several chances before the puck found its way to Arturo Lehkonen. Lehkonen beat Korpisalo, who had no chance, to level the score at one. Terrible defense allowed that one to happen.
The Canadiens dominated the start to the second period and were rewarded with their second goal of the night. A tip in front of the goal after a poor defensive effort saw Joel Armia beat Korpisalo to the short side and give the Canadiens a 2-1 lead in Nationwide Arena. Korpisalo wasn’t tight to his post and the goal beat him over his shoulder. Sloppy mistake from the #1 goaltender.
The Jackets tied the game at 2-2 with 13 minutes to go as Pierre-Luc Dubois scored off a feed from Emil Bemstrom. Dubois scored his team high 8th of the season.
The Jackets earned a power play but the Jackets made 30th ranked kill in the league look like world beaters. As the period ended, the Canadiens earned their own man advantage and the Jackets managed to kill it. The teams headed to the third all evened up. Shots favored Montreal 24-20.
With just over 13 minutes to go, Emil Bemstrom fired a backhand off the glass. Somehow it bounced off of Carey Price or someone else (maybe Price’s chest?) in front of the net and into the goal. It was trash as all hell, but it counted and gave the Jackets a 3-2 lead. Okay then. Congrats to Bemstrom for his third of the year.
With 8:54 to go, Boone Jenner scored on the power play (from Oliver Bjorkstrand and Zach Werenski) to push the Jackets to a two goal lead.
After several big Korpisalo saves on the penalty kill, PLD iced the game with 5:27 to go as Gustav Nyquist found him on the back post wide open and there was no mistake. 5-2 Jackets.
One worrying note: Montreal had 65 shot attempts to Columbus’ 39. The Jackets capitalized, but the Canadiens dominated shot attempts. Gotta clean that up.
Columbus Blue Jackets 5 Montreal Canadiens 2