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Preview: Blue Jackets at Sharks

Road back-to-back set begins Thursday night in San Jose

by Rob Mixer @RobMixer / BlueJackets.com

GAME 6: BLUE JACKETS AT SHARKS

SAP CENTER AT SAN JOSE, 10:30 P.M.

TV: FOX SPORTS OHIO / FOX SPORTS GO

RADIO: CD 102.5 FM / BLUEJACKETS.COM / CBJ APP

SETTING THE STAGE: No one's particularly thrilled about the result of Tuesday's game in Los Angeles. Rightly so, the Blue Jackets feel like they let an opportunity slip through their fingers. They had the Kings on the ropes and could not deliver the knockout blow, giving their opponent a chance to bounce back and regain control of the game. A late tying goal from Drew Doughty and the OT winner from Alec Martinez put a damper on an otherwise-decent road game in a tough building. Sergei Bobrovsky kept the Blue Jackets in it with 27 saves, and the power play connected once again thanks to a nifty alliance between Alexander Wennberg, Sam Gagner and Cam Atkinson.

The penalty kill was also stout, keeping the Kings off the board and improving to 94.1 percent (third-best in the NHL). A tough test awaits in San Jose, as the Sharks boast plenty of firepower and, as of today, represent the only dent in the Blue Jackets' penalty kill: a Patrick Marleau empty-net goal in their 3-2 win in Columbus on Oct. 15.

San Jose's deep playoff run last spring came up just short, but most of the roster returns in a Pacific Division that many consider to be wide open. The Sharks have started 4-3-0 in their first seven games and enter Thursday's game off a 2-1 win over the Anaheim Ducks on Tuesday.

Sergei Bobrovsky is expected to start for the Blue Jackets.

NOTEWORTHY NEWS: It seems as though John Tortorella has found some consistency with his forward lines and defense pairs, the latter being a pleasant surprise considering the absence of a key cog in Ryan Murray. Murray, who suffered an upper-body injury on Oct. 21, is not traveling with the team but is considered day-to-day. After a down year offensively in 2015-16, Nick Foligno is off to a productive start with five points in five games.

PROJECTED CBJ LINEUP:

Calvert - Dubinsky - Atkinson

Saad - Wennberg - Foligno

Hartnell - Karlsson - Anderson

Jenner - Sedlak - Gagner

Werenski - Jones

Johnson - Savard

Nutivaara - Prout

 

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