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Game Day Central: Blue Jackets vs. Ducks

by Staff / Columbus Blue Jackets

          BLUE JACKETS vs. DUCKS


LISTEN: Anisimov's second of the game (fourth of the season) that brought the Jackets back even at 3-3...right here.

Well, the tone of this game certainly changed in the second period. The Blue Jackets and Ducks are tied 2-2 but Columbus will have to do without Dubinsky for the balance of the game; he was given a five-minute penalty and game misconduct for an interference penalty on Saku Koivu. Anaheim has 4:26 of PP time left in the third period and it will be a pivotal juncture in the game. But prior to that, the Blue Jackets bounced back from a pair of fluky Ducks goals; Dubinsky made a great play on the PK to spring Anisimov for a shorthanded goal - the Jackets' second in as many games. Big third period ahead here at Nationwide Arena.

WATCH: The visual proof of Anisimov's slick finish for his third goal of the year...

LISTEN: It's an #ArtyParty - shorthanded to boot! Hear the call of the 2-2 right here.

LISTEN: If you prefer the audio, allow us to assist. Hear the call of Comeau's goal right here

WATCH: Blake Comeau's first goal of the season that gave the Jackets a 1-0 lead in the first period...

Not a bad opening period for the Blue Jackets, who played with good pace and established their forecheck in the first 20 minutes. The Ducks had some sustained time in the Columbus zone - including a shift of nearly two minutes that resulted from the Jackets' fourth line being caught on an icing call - but Bobrovsky made a few important stops to keep Anaheim off the board. The Blue Jackets were 2-for-2 on the penalty kill and did a great job supporting each other and supporting the puck, which you have to do anyway but especially so against a power play with so many weapons. Comeau's goal illustrated eactly what the Jackets have to do against Frederik Andersen: shoot the puck from everywhere and try to get as much as traffic as possible. Even a 50-foot slap shot has a chance of going in. 

UPDATE (2:30 PM): It's time for a #CBJSocial contest...who's ready?

Because we love trivia, let's see who can come up with today's answer. 

The Blue Jackets won two of three meetings with the Ducks last season, including a pair of overtime wins late in the year. Who scored the two OT winners for Columbus in the season series? Tweet us at @BlueJacketsNHL using #CBJSocial, and we'll randomly select one winner for two (2) tickets!

UPDATE (12:00 PM):
Here's video from Richards' pre-game media scrum, courtesy of Jackets TV.

UPDATE (11:15 AM):
Based on the Ducks' brief morning skate, they will not have Dustin Penner, Mathieu Perreault or Jakob Silvferberg tonight in Columbus. On the back end, they're still missing Mark Fistric and Luca Sbisa.

UPDATE (10:45 AM):
The Blue Jackets held an optional morning skate in advance of tonight's game against the Ducks. Here's what Todd Richards had to say after meeting with the media...

- Derek MacKenzie will not play tonight. He's stlil considered day-to-day with a lower body injury.

- Michael Chaput, recalled from Springfield (AHL) yesterday, will make his NHL debut tonight and Ryan Craig also draws back into the lineup. Boone Jenner did not skate today and his timetable is still indefinite.

- Asked for his thoughts on Ducks legend Teemu Selanne - who plays his final game in Columbus tonight - Richards said this: "I know from where I sit he's not much to watch." He said that half-jokingly, of course, and said that it doesn't matter how old Selanne gets -- he's still one of the best skaters in the game and one the most dangerous players when he gets the puck.

- Sergei Bobrovsky starts tonight for the Blue Jackets, while Anaheim is expected to roll with youngster Frederik Andersen, who was outstanding in the Ducks' 2-1 win over Ottawa. 

Morning Skate Interviews:
Chaput | Letestu

The Blue Jackets will skate a tad earlier than normal on Sunday; due to the 6 p.m. face-off, Columbus is scheduled for a 9:45 a.m. pre-game skate on the main ice at Nationwide Arena. Anaheim should take the ice around 11 a.m., and we'll have all the news and updates from both sides as game day rolls along.

We don't always offer advice, but when we do, we advise you to keep checking this page throughout game day.

After a dramatic win over the Maple Leafs on Friday night, the Blue Jackets didn't get the best news on the injury front on Saturday morning. 

Blue Jackets coach Todd Richards updated the media following a brief Saturday practice at Nationwide Arena: both Boone Jenner and Derek MacKenzie are dealing with lower body injuries and both could potentially miss Sunday's game against the Anaheim Ducks. Richards said Jenner will be re-evaluated in the coming days, but the initial prognosis is that he will miss "some time." 

As for MacKenzie, Richards sounded a bit more optimistic and deemed him day-to-day. Nothing is set in stone, but it's possible that MacKenzie could play on Sunday.

As a precaution, the Blue Jackets recalled Michael Chaput from Springfield (AHL) to bring the NHL roster to its 23-player capacity.

Two teams playing very well will get together on Sunday afternoon in Columbus, and they're doing it in a variety of ways. 

The Blue Jackets, who broke out of a four-game losing streak to start the three-game win streak they're currently on, have worn down opponents and been opportunistic (much like they were last season) in victories over Vancouver, New Jersey and most recently Toronto.

And who would have thought that a 37-save performance from Curtis McElhinney - his first NHL appearance since Dec. 31, 2011 - would be the shot in the arm that the Blue Jackets needed? It's certainly looking that way, but the challenge now is to continue to take care of business at home.

With Anaheim in town, there's not much homework that needs to be done. The Blue Jackets know them well from spending their last 12 years in the Western Conference and whenever they get together with the Ducks, it has been a spirited and combative affair.

They met for two intense match-ups with playoff spots on the line last spring (one in Columbus, the other in Anaheim) and the Blue Jackets earned a pair of overtime victories that were as impeccably-timed as they were exciting.

Now the page has turned and it's a new season. One thing hasn't changed, and that's the Ducks playing a high-tempo and "attack" style of game under coach Bruce Boudreau. The Blue Jackets had a well thought-out game plan for the Ducks last season and it started with defending (no surprise here); Columbus wanted to make Anaheim's top players skate as much as possible without the puck and come 200 feet up the ice to generate any chances. 


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