The tank battle went almost how you would expect it to go. Both teams played terrible hockey for stretches and somehow managed to make the game go to overtime. The Jackets ultimately picked up the victory despite blowing a third period lead. Here’s what happened.
There was little defense early on in the game as both teams traded chances. Both teams combined for 20 shot attempts in the first 7 minutes.
Berni went off for hooking to give the Sharks the first power play of the night. Barabanov cleaned up a rebound to give them the early lead.
SJS PP Goal 1-0: Barabanov (Couture, Hertl) 8:00
The Jackets tied the game up later in the period. Gaudreau grabbed a rebound off a Laine shot and roofed it past Kahkonen.
CBJ Goal 1-1: Gaudreau (Laine, Bayreuther) 12:29
JOHNNY TIES IT UP pic.twitter.com/IHbx37Q2Px— Columbus Blue Jackets (@BlueJacketsNHL) March 15, 2023
With 1:44 left in the period, the Jackets went on the power play after Karlsson tripped Marchenko. It looked like quite the acting job by Marchy, but still resulted in a power play nonetheless. The Jackets didn’t score, but they did draw another penalty with six seconds left.
Despite a slow start, the Jackets ended up dominating the period. At 5v5, they led the Sharks in shot attempts 30-12 and xGF 1.68-0.33. Laine’s primary assist on Gaudreau’s goal extended his point streak to six games.
With one second left on the power play, Kent Johnson put one through the five-hole to give the Jackets the lead. A heads up by Tarasov led to the goal. Knowing time was running short, Tarasov skated out and sent a long pass to Gaudreau, who earned the primary assist on the goal.
CBJ PP Goal 2-1: Johnson (Gaudreau, Tarasov) 1:54
KJ GOAL— Columbus Blue Jackets (@BlueJacketsNHL) March 15, 2023
featuring a Tarry assist pic.twitter.com/NYvYlsLlDT
The Jackets struck again off the rush. Gaudreau skated the puck through the zone and threw the puck into the slot. Jenner was able to muscle his way to the net and sweep it home.
CBJ Goal 3-1: Jenner (Gaudreau, Robinson) 5:28
THE CAPTAIN MAKES IT 3️⃣ pic.twitter.com/PTJ7nhXkgE— Columbus Blue Jackets (@BlueJacketsNHL) March 15, 2023
The Sharks sent the Jackets back to the power play when Svechnikov sailed the puck over the glass for a delay of game penalty.
An extended shift in the Jackets’ zone led to the 3-2 goal. An unfortunate bounce off a blocked shot landed on the stick Eklund and all he had to do was get the puck past a diving Tarasov.
SJS Goal 3-2: Eklund (Hertl, Pouliot) 10:24
The Jackets got the goal back when Jenner scored his second of the night. Gaudreau, picking up his fourth point, fired a quick spin-o-rama pass that found Jenner in the slot.
CBJ Goal 4-2: Jenner (Gaudreau) 17:17
CAP'N GOT GOALS IN HIM pic.twitter.com/uEOFbQE8My— Columbus Blue Jackets (@BlueJacketsNHL) March 15, 2023
Tarasov let in a goal at the buzzer that he likely wants back. Couture fired a shot through traffic that surprised the Jackets’ goalie.
SJS Goal 4-3: Couture (unassisted) 20:00
Through two periods, the Jackets led in shots 31-14 and shot attempts 58-34 in all situations. The Sharks had 3 goals on 14 shots, which is not ideal.
Foudy made it 5-3 when he sniped an Olivier feed top corner past Kahkonen. Blankenburg started the rush with a nice lead pass. It was Foudy’s 4th goal in 11 games after going 62 games without a regular season goal.
CBJ Goal 5-3: Foudy (Olivier, Blankenburg) 2:20
Liam Foudy makes it 5-3 @BlueJacketsNHL with his second goal in his last three games!#CBJ pic.twitter.com/RoMtCD5L9C— Bally Sports Columbus (@BallySportsCBUS) March 15, 2023
KJ went to the box for hooking after the goal. The Sharks scored their second power play goal of the night when Labanc danced around Blankenburg and fired a wrister past Tarasov.
SJS PP Goal 5-4: Labanc (Benning, Zetterlund) 5:53
The Sharks continued pushing and eventually tied the game. Knyzhov retrieved a bouncing puck and put the puck top far corner past a screened Tarasov.
SJS Goal 5-5: Knyzhov (Couture, Barabanov) 11:20
To make matters worse, Pederson immediately went to the box for tripping after the goal. Tarasov made an unbelievable pad save on the power play to keep the game even, but was shaken up as a result. He would stay in the game, however.
Neither team would be able to prevent the game from going to overtime.
Laine and Gaudreau had a two man breakaway to end the game. Laine missed his shot, but luckily found the rebound and then Gaudreau’s stick for the victory.
CBJ Goal 6-5: Gaudreau (Laine) 4:17
A 5-POINT NIGHT FOR JOHNNY HOCKEY— Sportsnet (@Sportsnet) March 15, 2023
The Blue Jackets cap off a wild game against the Sharks as Johnny Gaudreau scores the @SUBWAYCanada OT winner! pic.twitter.com/ozjAnlej1S
Shoutout to Johnny Gaudreau for his five point game. Without him, this game likely would have looked a lot different.
It was a good night. The Jackets won, but so did the Blackhawks. The Sharks also picked up a point, preventing them from gaining huge momentum in the tank race.
The Blue Jackets continue their road trip as they take on Gavrikov, Korpisalo, and the Kings on Thursday. The puck drops at 10:30PM ET.