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Blue Jackets end rough week with 3-1 win against the Flames

Laine led the way by scoring one minute into the game. A solid defensive effort capped off the win.

Calgary Flames v Columbus Blue Jackets Photo by Emilee Chinn/Getty Images

Following one of the worst games in Columbus Blue Jackets history, the Calgary Flames came to town to face their former teammates Johnny Gaudreau and Erik Gudbranson for the first time. After being the laughing stock of the NHL over the last 48 hours, the last thing the Jackets wanted to do was come out flat. Thankfully, they did not.

1st Period

The Jackets quickly put Wednesday night behind them when Roslovic hit Laine on a breakaway just one minute into the game. Laine did not miss. Credit Chinakhov with the second helper. His quick outlet pass to Roslovic opened up the play.

CBJ Goal 1-0: Laine (Roslovic, Chinakhov) 1:02

The fourth line, however, carried over their play from the last game as Olivier went to the box for slashing two minutes later. Fortunately for him, his teammates kill off the penalty. The game would get better for the fourth line as the night went on.

The Jackets continued to push, including several prime chances by the line credited with the first goal.

Laine went to the bench for hooking a while later. Hanifin earned the Oscar for his performance to sell it to the referee. The Jackets were able to kill that penalty off as well.

Markstrom absolutely robbed Laine of his second goal of the night on a two-on-one. He rolled over to get across the crease and stacked the pads to fight off the shot.

Chinakhov made an elite steal high in the defensive zone and sprung himself on a breakaway. He had Laine with him, but he chose to shoot and Markstrom was able to make the save.

The Roslovic line was buzzing in the first period. They easily could have had one or two more goals. The top line was quiet offensively, but they did a good job of keeping the puck away from the Flames.

2nd Period

Elvis was in goal to start the second period after Korpisalo sustained a lower body injury in the first period. The good news is that Elvis’ Reverse Retro pads are ridiculously awesome. They also seemed to help him out throughout the night.

The Jackets made it 2-0 when Robinson picked off a Flames pass. Robbie used his speed and a pick from Olivier to get some open ice and snipe one over Markstrom’s glove.

CBJ Goal 2-0: Robinson (unassisted) 2:52

Hanifin went to the box for cross-checking immediately after the goal giving the Jackets their first power play. Not much going for the home team on the man advantage.

Zadorov sent Columbus right back to the power play with a holding penalty. Gaudreau got a couple of clean looks on net, but Markstrom was able to get in front of both of them.

The Flames went to the power play late in the period when Roslovic went to the box for slashing. The Jackets had to withstand some significant zone time by the Flames, but they were able to kill off the penalty.

A push from the Flames late in the period had the Jackets hemmed in their own zone. Blocked shots and good play in front of Elvis kept the game at 2-0.

3rd Period

Sillinger went to the box for charging early in the period. Five seconds into the Flames power play, Toffoli went to the box for hooking. Shortly after those penalties expired, the Jackets went back to the power play after Tanev tripped up Jenner in front of the net. A minute into the power play, Weegar also tripped Jenner to give the Jackets a five-on-three. Penalty parade.

Johnson nearly scored a between the legs goal on the five-on-three, but the Jackets inability to move on the power play kept them from scoring during the three minute advantage. It is mindboggling why they do not move and pass around to get the defense out of position. So often they just stand around hoping the defenders will magically get out of the way.

The Jackets got yet another power play when Weegar went back to the box for both slashing and unsportsmanlike conduct. Less than 20 second into the power play, Bjork went off for tripping. That is a brutal mistake for a guy that was having a decent game.

Elvis made an outstanding save during the four-on-four to keep the game at 2-0. He received a stick check to a region of the body you do not wish to have such things done to. EBUG thoughts crossed everyone’s minds in the moment, but Elvis was able to shake it off and stay in the game.

There were no shots for the Jackets on the power play that followed the four-on-four from the Weegar double minor.

The twelfth minor penalty of the night was called on Olivier when he committed a cross-check on Huberdeau. The softness of the penalty call could have been called into question, but Huberdeau did a good job of selling it.

Markstrom was pulled from the net to make it a six-on-four. The Jackets were able to kill the penalty off.

The Flames were able to kill the shutout during the six-on-five. Stone fired one from the point through the traffic to beat Elvis.

CGY Goal 2-1: Stone (Backlund, Hanifin) 17:26

A hard push by the Flames had the Jackets scrambling. Olivier made an outstanding clear of the puck that led to a Kuraly goal to ice the game.

CBJ EN Goal 3-1: Kuraly (Jenner, Olivier) 19:36

Final Thoughts

After a horrific game and three big losses, the Blue Jackets responded by playing a solid game against the Flames. They played tight defense and looked like they wanted to win the game. Their effort was questioned in the last game, but it cannot be questioned in this one.

There were big contributions by several of the youngsters. The Berni-Christiansen defensive pairing was very solid — Berni in particular was very good all night. Chinakhov also stood out significantly. He was dominant at times, generated many offensive chances, and was also noticeable on defense.

The Jackets won this game and played well, but the ice time distribution is still head scratching. Johnson played only 7:25 at even strength, despite leading the team in both CF% and xGF%. Both Sillinger and Marchenko played less than 7 minutes at even strength. For the love of God, just send the kids to Cleveland if you aren’t going to play them.

Elvis played well and saved 19 of 20 shots after having to enter the game cold. It is amazing what playing solid defense in front of a goalie will do. Hopefully this will kickstart him and return some of his confidence.

Up Next

The Los Angeles Kings come to town on Sunday for a 6:00PM ET puck drop.