BLUE JACKETS 4 | PANTHERS 3
Ryan Johansen Post Game
Sergei Bobrovsky Post Game
Todd Richards Post Game
Ryan Johansen's Shoot-out Winner
Bobrovsky Save on BjugstadANALYSIS:
We'll keep this short and sweet. The second period was not a good one for the Blue Jackets. They were out-shot 19-3 (!) and two of their shots came on the same play...the play that led to Boone Jenner's goal 57 seconds into the period - a goal that made it 3-0 for Columbus. We're tied 3-3 after 40 minutes. Needless to say, a big third period response needed by the Jackets to wipe out that middle frame.
Boone Jenner goalANALYSIS:
A strong start for the Blue Jackets tonight in Sunrise. They came prepared to skate, play the full 200 feet and win the battles in all three zones. Though they didn't spend a lot of time with the puck in the first period (only 39% CF) they capitalized on their limited chances, and did so early. Nick Foligno cashed his team-leading 11th goal of the season just 1:07 into the game, swiftly tucking in a wrap-around before Roberto Luongo could get to the far post. Then it was Cam Atkinson midway through the first, picking up a loose puck in the neutral zone and using his speed to create a breakaway. He went high glove side on Luongo for his eighth of the season, and that's where we stand after 20 minutes. Shots are 13-11 Florida.
Nick Foligno goal
Cam Atkinson goal
Jared Boll Pre-Game
Scott Hartnell Pre-Game
Todd Richards Pre-GameUPDATE (1:00 PM):
Here are the Blue Jackets' lines and pairs for tonight's game: Hartnell-Johansen-Foligno, Rychel-Jenner-Atkinson, Calvert-Chaput-Skille, Gibbons-Cracknell-Boll; Johnson-Prout, Connauton-Wisniewski, Leopold-Savard.
UPDATE (12:30 PM): Same lineup tonight for the Blue Jackets, which means Brandon Dubinsky will wait at least another day for his season debut. He took part in today's morning skate at BB&T Center but was not on a regular line during practice.
UPDATE (11:20 AM): Roberto Luongo will start in tonight for the Panthers. He's expected to face Sergei Bobrovsky for the Blue Jackets.
The Blue Jackets are in sunny Florida for the weekend, where they'll play the Florida Panthers tonight in the second game of a home-and home stint. Saturday they'll head over to Tampa to battle the Lightning, the NHL's most potent offense. Tonight's match-up with the Panthers should be quite different, with the Panthers ranked 29th in the league in goals scored, just behind the 28th-ranked Blue Jackets.
Monday's 2-1 Jackets victory over the Panthers at Nationwide Arena was a defensive battle that lasted to the final buzzer, and we can expect more of the same tonight at BB&T Center. They'll start preparing for tonight's contest when they hit the ice for the morning skate at 11:30, but you can start preparing right now!
Here as some tidbits to get you moving on a Blue Jackets game day...
- The Blue Jackets faced Panthers backup goaltender Al Montoya on Monday night, who fared pretty well stopping 21 of 23 shots. But the Jackets will face a bigger challenge if starter Roberto Luongo gets the call between the pipes. Luongo backed up Montoya on Monday as he returned from injury, and he did start for the Panthers on Tuesday in Detroit. He made 38 saves in Florida's win over the Red Wings.
- Brandon Dubinsky has continued to practice during the week, but he was not a full participant in drills on Wednesday. Thus, it would appear unlikely that he would make his first appearance of the season tonight. But he remains close to a return and did make the trip.
- If the Jackets hope to win back-to-back games for the third time this season, they'll need to overcome a couple of season-long trends. The Jackets have struggled against the Atlantic Division (2-5-1), with their only two wins coming in the season opener against the Sabres and on Monday night against Florida. Secondly, the Jackets have played the Hurricanes, Sharks, Flyers, and Senators twice this season. Only against the Sharks were the Jackets able to win that second meeting (and the season series 2-0). Against the other three opponents, that Blue Jackets are a combined 0-3 the second time around and have been outscored 12-6.
Columbus was impressive and resilient in defeating the Panthers on Monday. Can they do it a second time?