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Post Game: Bruins 3, Blue Jackets 2 (OT)

by Rob Mixer / Columbus Blue Jackets



In what was the epitome of an opportunistic game, the Bruins needed a small window to win their fifth straight game and send the Blue Jackets to a second consecutive overtime loss on the road.

Cam Atkinson had his shot blocked at the offensive blue line, and Milan Lucic took off the other way for a clear-cut breakaway. He made a quick head fake and fired his eighth goal of the season between the pads of Sergei Bobrovsky and allowed the TD Garden faithful to exhale after a tightly-contested, physical hockey game. 

And while this one stings for the Blue Jackets, they were able to frustrate a Bruins team that has been playing extremely well. They were in on the forecheck, they finished their checks and played a relatively clean game through the neutral zone where the Bruins are known for doing a lot of damage. In their own zone, the Blue Jackets were especially good in the third period, closing off the Bruins attack and not allowing them to get any sustained attack time going. The end result is frustrating, but the Blue Jackets have picked up points in three straight games (1-0-2) and are within reach of the playoff bar in the Metropolitan Division.

Now, to the rundown of this entertaining game in Beantown.

Blake Comeau opened the scoring at 12:48 of the first period off a nice setup from Mark Letestu, who had beaten out an icing call seconds earlier and won the race to a loose puck behind the net. Letestu centered it, Comeau finished it, and the Jackets had yet another lead on the road.

The Bruins evened it up late in the first period thanks to a weird re-direct from Loui Eriksson, whose boot got a chunk of Zdeno Chara's point shot. Columbus kept pushing and shook off a not-so-good latter half of the second period, eventually netting the 2-2 goal late in the middle frame off the stick of Nick Foligno.

Scoreless it was, but the third period was energetic and at times played at a break-neck pace. Bobrovsky made some big stops to relieve the pressure, and the Jackets kept their forecheck going in the Bruins' end. They won't have much time to worry about this one, though; they're back on home ice tomorrow night to face the Montreal Canadiens.

Foligno's goal was a huge boost for the Jackets, who had their share of chances to tie things put couldn't get the puck past Chad Johnson. It was a great individual effort, too, as Foligno took the initial shot but followed the long rebound into the slot and deposited it to Johnson's stick side. Even though Columbus came up one shot short, Foligno's goal came at the right time for a team that really needed it.

Rather quiet night for Lucic (by his standards) until the game-winning goal; he played over 18 minutes, took two shots on goal and won 6-of-7 draws on the night. 

Starting in place of No. 1 goaltender Tuukka Rask, Johnson played well for the Bruins and made some big stops both early in the game and also in the third period. Johnson finished with 32 saves on 34 shots for Boston.

The big, lanky centerman has taken huge strides this year and he was a force tonight for the Jackets. Johansen played 20:09 in all situations and fired six shots on goal - two more than any other player in the game.


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