POST GAME INTERVIEWS
Jack Johnson --> WATCH HERE
Ryan Johansen --> WATCH HERE
Todd Richards --> WATCH HERE
IN GAME UPDATES
SECOND PERIOD RECAP: The Blue Jackets did not carry much momentum into the second period, as the Ducks got back on the gas pedal and dominated long stretches of the middle frame. Columbus failed to record a shot on goal until the 9:43 mark of the second period, their first attempt at John Gibson since the final minute of the first period. Scoring chances were few and far between, and the lone goal of the period was a nifty re-direction in front by Devante Smith-Pelly, who tipped in a centering pass through the legs of Bobrovsky for a 3-1 Anaheim lead. That’s where we stand with 20 minutes left for a Blue Jackets rally. Can they do it again tonight?
FIRST PERIOD RECAP:
BLUE JACKETS 1 | DUCKS 4
It wasn’t the best start for the Blue Jackets, going down 2-0 early in the first period and looking out of sorts in the first 10 minutes at Honda Center. To their credit, the Ducks (who have won six straight coming into tonight’s game) were flying, winning the battles and getting to pucks before the Jackets, which allowed them to set the tempo and put the visitors behind the eight-ball. Corey Perry scored his ninth of the season less than 90 seconds in, and Sami Vatanen scored a few minutes later to stake Anaheim to a two-goal edge but the Blue Jackets clawed their way back into it later in the period. Scott Hartnell's power play goal cut the Ducks’ lead in half and ignited the Blue Jackets in the final minutes, and they’re very much in this one after 20 minutes. Shots are 8-5 favoring Anaheim.
Scott Hartnell's first of the season on the power play makes it 2-1 --> WATCH HERE | LISTEN HERE
Jared Boll and David Savard spoke earlier today...
Jared Boll --> WATCH HERE
David Savard --> WATCH HERE
Eric Stephens of the OC Register confirms that John Gibson will start in goal for the Ducks tonight. Gibson has not played since Anaheim's season opener, when he surrendered six goals on 39 shots in a loss to Pittsburgh. He was 3-0-0 last season in his first NHL action, with a .954 save percentage and a goal-sagainst average of 1.44. He was also 2-2 in four playoff appearances.
The Blue Jackets persevered in San Jose and now head down the Pacific Coast to face the hottest team in the NHL, the Anaheim Ducks. The Ducks have won six games in a row, are coming off a comfortable victory over the Buffalo Sabres, and are feeling right at home entering the fourth of five straight games at Honda Center.
The Ducks are seemingly scoring at will, have two of the most explosive players in the game on the same line, and have found a rock in goal in last year’s rookie phenom Frederik Andersen. The Ducks have it all.
Ryan Getzlaf and Corey Perry haven’t missed a beat after their dual Hart Trophy-worthy campaigns last year. Getzlaf has been as good a play-maker as ever with eight assists, as well as two goals. Perry's hat-trick against Buffalo gave him eight goals in the first seven games, tied for the league lead. The Ducks also have secondary scoring options in Jakob Silfverberg, Matt Beleskey (four goals), and Ryan Kesler.
Kesler was one of the biggest acquisitions made by any NHL team over the summer, and the Ducks hope he can be the final piece in their Stanley Cup puzzle. He’s perennially a Selke Trophy contender as the league’s best defensive forward (2011 winner), is one of the game’s strongest penalty killing threats, and has topped the 20-goal mark in six of the last seven seasons. He already has six points this season.
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On defense, Cam Fowler has developed into one of the better puck-moving defenseman in the game and he is joined by young Finnish defenseman Sami Vatanen as a power play threat. Hampus Lindholm, who boasted a +29 rating last year as a rookie, is already a team-best +7 this season.
In goal, Andersen is 6-0 with a shutout, a .951 save percentage, and a 1.32 goals against average.
The Blue Jackets came back from a two-goal deficit for the third time this season, and for the first time they exited with a win. Nick Foligno remained hot for the Jackets, his power play goal in the third extending his point streak to six games and tying the score at 4-4. It was Ryan Johansen scoring twice in the second period, extending his own six-game streak and getting the Jackets back in the game.
Columbus' other two-goal scorer? Mark Letestu, who scored the team's first shorthanded goal of the season and tipped in the game-winner in the final minute. Artem Anisimov, with an assist and a strong evening penalty killing, played arguably his best game since the home opener. Scott Hartnell registered a career-high four assists.
The Blue Jackets are 0-1-0 in the second half of back-to-backs this season after their loss in Ottawa on Saturday. They were 10-6-1 in the second half of back-to-backs last season.
These were the Blue Jackets' lines and pairings in San Jose last night and are subject to change...
at LA Kings
Sunday, 4:00 p.m. ET