DETROIT - It was the kind of game you'd expect for a team stuck in a frustrating four-game losing streak.
The Blue Jackets are no longer saddled with that streak, but it wasn't exactly easy to shed in a 2-1 shootout win against the Detroit Red Wings on Saturday night at Little Caesar's Arena.
The losing skid ended thanks to some great goaltending by Sergei Bobrovsky, who made one of his 32 saves against a 2-on-0 rush in 3-on-3 overtime and outlasted Red Wings goalie Jimmy Howard in a nine-round shootout.
"We needed one of these games," center Brandon Dubinsky said. "We needed to get some points, regardless of how it happened. The result was the most important thing, and we got it. It feels good right now."
The game was also decided on great shootout move, only it wasn't one of the Jackets' most skilled forwards who scored it.
It was veteran defenseman Jack Johnson, who grew up in nearby Bloomfield Hills, Mich., and played collegiately for the University of Michigan. After getting the nod from coach John Tortorella, Johnson deked Howard down and sent the puck into the net for the 12th shootout goal of his NHL career.
"I was sitting there watching us shoot, you know, shooting not deking. Howie was feeling it and was really challenging. I was going to go down and deke. I just didn't know if I was going to go to my backhand or forehand. Skating down the ice was pretty bad, so I decided to keep it on my forehand."
Video: CBJ@DET: Johnson makes nice forehand move to win it
It ended a game that was anything but easy for the Blue Jackets (10-7-1) to win.
Once again, Columbus had numerous scoring chances turned away by a hot goalie. Once again, the Jackets scored early in the game, on a goal by Artemi Panarin, and got nothing else through the remainder of regulation and overtime.
Once again, they leaned on Bobrovsky, only this time that was good enough. "Bob" was good enough, in the game and the shootout, and the losing streak is history.
It wasn't the longest shootout in franchise history, even though it felt like it. The Blue Jackets have twice before gone 11 rounds in shootouts, but this one was close enough.
There were also 65 minutes of hockey that preceded it, and here's how it all went down:
(Corsi, scoring chance data per naturalstattrick.com)
Goals: CBJ - Artemi Panarin (Oliver Bjorkstrand, David Savard), 1:07; DET - None
Shots: Blue Jackets 13, Red Wings 11
Shot-Attempts percentage (Corsi 5v5): Red Wings 51.6% (16-15), Blue Jackets 48.4% (15-16)
Scoring chances 5v5: Blue Jackets 8, Red Wings 6
High-Danger chances 5v5: Red Wings 3, Blue Jackets 2
Video: CBJ@DET: Panarin fires home a one-timer
1:07 - GOAL- Panarin's struggle to score goals has been a hotly-discussed subject in the early part of the season, after the Blue Jackets traded Brandon Saad back to the Chicago Blackhawks this past summer to acquire the talented Russian left wing. Panarin came into this game with two goals on the season and just one in his previous 13 games. It only took one shift to score his third, which opened the scoring.
During a line change, Panarin skated into the Red Wings' zone uncovered while Bjorkstrand got to the puck in the right-wing corner. He sent a great feed to the front of the net, and Panarin slammed it home with a kneeling one-timer to beat Howard.
1:07 - During the play that led to Panarin's goal, linesman David Brisbois went to the ice hard after Blue Jackets' defenseman Markus Nutivaara lost an edge, fell and slid into him. Brisebois was attended to on the ice, left the game briefly and returned in the first period. Nutivaara wasn't injured either.
7:02 - Following Panarin's goal, the Red Wings made a concerted effort to get it back to even the game up. They didn't get the tying goal, but only because Bobrovsky was on point to start this game.
Detroit outshot Columbus 6-0 after Panarin scored, including four in a row in a span of 34 seconds. Red Wings captain Henrik Zetterberg had the best chance, off a one-timer at 6:45, but Bobrovsky gloved it away to keep it 1-0.
Video: CBJ@DET: Bobrovsky stones Zetterberg with the glove
11:37 - Bjorkstrand drew an interference penalty on Detroit's Luke Glendening, which resulted in the game's first power-play. It was another nice play by Bjorkstrand, who only played two shifts in the third period Friday against the Hurricanes.
The Jackets weren't able to do much with the man-advantage. They got one shot on goal from Boone Jenner, from the front of the net, but Howard made a right pad save.
17:27 - Red Wings goalie Jimmy Howard began to make some highlight-reel saves of his own as the period wore on, but Bobrovsky came up with another beauty with 2:33 left in the period.
Detroit had an odd-man rush, led by two of the NHL's fastest skaters -- Andreas Athanasiou and Dylan Larkin - but Bobrovsky read the play correctly, squared up to Larkin's wrist shot and held onto it.
19:17 - Josh Anderson was awarded a penalty shot after he made Red Wings defenseman Xavier Ouellet pay for whiffing on a shot just inside the Columbus blue line. Anderson stole it, took off on a breakaway and drew a holding penalty on defenseman Mike Green.
Anderson skated wide during his first penalty-shot attempt in the NHL, and carried the puck back into the slot. Howard gloved the puck off his wrist shot to keep it 1-0. Nine seconds later, Howard made another good snag to deny Panarin a second goal.
QUOTE: "I was just looking for an opportunity to put it in the net. Obviously, I didn't get it up high enough and he made a good save there." - Anderson, per Fox Sports Ohio's second-intermission interview.
Goals: CBJ - None; DET - None
Shots: Red Wings 12, Blue Jackets 9
Shot-Attempts percentage (Corsi 5v5): Red Wings 60% (21-14), Blue Jackets 40% (14-21)
Scoring chances 5v5: Red Wings 12, Blue Jackets 8
High-Danger chances 5v5: Red Wings 5, Blue Jackets 4
2:57 - Jenner created a mini-break for himself by pickpocketing the puck off a Red Wings player and heading straight for the Detroit net. Howard prepared for the shot, but it never arrived. The puck slid off Jenner's stick to end the threat.
8:15 - More great work in net by "Bob," kept the Red Wings off the scoreboard again. Larkin created a 3-on-2 for Detroit, skating the puck up the right wing with Athanasiou in the middle and Tomas Tatar on the left wing.
Larkin got it to Tatar, who took a hard wrist shot from the inside half of the left face-off circle. Bobrovsky sent it to the corner with his blocker, where Tatar got it back and sent a pass back to Larkin in the right circle. The Jackets' goalie tracked it, and made a great save with his right pad.
10:59 - Detroit passed Columbus in shots during the first half of the period, outshooting the Blue Jackets 8-4 by this stoppage in play.
15:43 - The Red Wings dominated puck possession for much of this period and held the puck in the Columbus zone. They just didn't score thanks to Bobrovsky and several blocked shots in a 1:34 span late in the period.
Rookie forward Pierre-Luc Dubois blocked Zetterberg's slap shot at 12:27, defenseman Zach Werenski got in front of Gustav Nyquist's wrist shot at 13:17 and Jenner stood in the way of Green's snap shot at 14:01, preserving a 1-0 lead.
Goals: CBJ - None; DET - Andreas Athanasiou (Niklas Kronwall, Tomas Tatar), 6:11;
Shots: Blue Jackets 8, Red Wings 7
Shot-Attempts percentage (Corsi 5v5): Blue Jackets 63.3% (19-11), Red Wings 36.7% (11-19)
Scoring chances 5v5: Blue Jackets 11, Red Wings 3
High-Danger chances 5v5: Red Wings 2, Blue Jackets 1
Overall Corsi: Blue Jackets 50% (48-48), Red Wings 50% (48-48)
Overall 5v5 Scoring chances: Blue Jackets 27, Red Wings 21
Overall High-Danger chances: Red Wings 9, Blue Jackets 8
6:11 - Just as Carolina did Friday night, Detroit tied the game with a goal created by a shot fake and pass. Kronwall got the puck in the high slot, faked the shot and slid a nice pass to the left of the net for Athanasiou. Bobrovsky, who bit on the shot fake, was caught out of position and Athanasiou knotted it, 1-1, rewarding the Red Wings for keeping pressure on the Blue Jackets' goalie.
9:44 - Following the goal, the Blue Jackets made a strong push to reclaim the lead. That included a nice play by Panarin. He saw the puck in the air, grabbed it while standing in the slot and threw it to the ice. He quickly wheeled and fired it, forcing Howard to make a save.
11:20 - Nyquist stole the puck from Tyler Motte in the neutral zone and quickly raced up the left wing for a rush that nearly resulted in a great scoring chance. He threw a feed to the front of the net for Anthony Mantha, the Red Wings' leading goal-scorer, but Werenski was stride for stride with him and broke up the play with his stick.
14:11 - This was one of Athanasiou's best games since joining the Red Wings after missing the first 10 games because of a contract dispute. He was all over the ice, using his speed, and did it again with 5:49 left in the period.
After carrying the puck through the neutral zone, he crossed the Blue Jackets' blue line and fired a wrist shot through traffic to the far side of the net. Bobrovsky tracked it, gloved it and froze it.
18:45 - The Blue Jackets pushed hard to end this game in regulation, but came up short. They had two shots on goal in the final 2:00, by Jones and Cam Atkinson. Jones was denied on a long wrist shot, and Howard stopped Atkinson's tip attempt with 1:15 left.
Goals: CBJ - None; DET - None
Shots: Red Wings 3, Blue Jackets 2
Overall shots: Red Wings 33, Blue Jackets 32
1:36 - Missed it by that much. Werenski got a great feed from Nick Foligno in the right circle, one-timed a shot and nearly ended it. Howard got his glove on it, sending the puck into the crossbar and away from the net.
3:34 - Bobrovsky was fantastic all game, but saved his best for the end. Athanasiou again got the puck on a break, but waited for Mantha this time for a 2-on-0 in front of Bobrovsky. They hit each other with passes, getting Bobrovsky to move, before Athanasiou redirected the final pass from Mantha toward the net. Bobrovsky just stopped it with his skate.
Video: CBJ@DET: Bobrovsky gloves Larkin's shot on rush
"You know, we're in a tough spot, but Bob made that save and it was such an amazing save," Johnson said. "You almost start laughing, because it's an incredible save. But he doesn't quit on a play, even when he's down and out. He tries everything he can to make it."
4:00 - Mantha also got a breakaway, tried a low wrist shot and Bobrovsky turned that one away, as well.
Goals: CBJ - Panarin, 2nd round; Jack Johnson, 9th round; DET - Frans Nielsen, 1st round
CBJ - Cam Atkinson (backhand, saved) 1st round; Bjorkstrand (wrist, saved) third round; Werenski (wrist, saved) 4th round; Brandon Dubinsky (wrist, saved) 5th round; Alexander Wennberg (glove save) 6th round; Jenner (wrist, goalpost) 7th round; Foligno (wrist, saved) 8th round
DET - Athanasiou (backhand, saved) 2nd round; Nyquist (backhand, saved) 3rd round; Zetterberg (backhand, saved) 4th round; Tatar (backhand, saved) 5th round; Larkin (goalpost), 6th round; Mantha (wrist, saved) 7th round; Martin Frk (wrist, saved) 8th round; Trevor Daley (wrist, saved) 9th round