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Calvert, Bobrovsky help Blue Jackets defeat Devils

by Mike G. Morreale /

NEWARK, N.J. -- William Karlsson and Matt Calvert scored, and Sergei Bobrovsky made 27 saves to give the Columbus Blue Jackets a 2-1 win against the New Jersey Devils at Prudential Center on Wednesday.

Bobrovsky, who has allowed two or fewer goals in five of his past six starts, won his ninth game of the season for the Blue Jackets (9-14-0). Columbus is 9-7-0 since John Tortorella replaced Todd Richards as coach on Oct. 21.

"We certainly can't hover around .500, we've got to find a way to string some wins together for sure, but it's not going to be an easy task," Blue Jackets center Brandon Dubinsky said. "I think this group can do it, and I think with [Tortorella], we're getting better as a group. I think we're capable of doing it."

The Blue Jackets, who have won five of seven, host the Pittsburgh Penguins on Friday.

Adam Henrique scored, and Cory Schneider made 23 saves for the Devils (11-9-1), who have lost three of four.

Calvert gave the Blue Jackets a 2-1 lead with 1:24 left in the second period. Schneider made a save against Cam Atkinson with his pad while on the ice before Calvert knocked in his opportunity at the left post.

"It's nice to have a bounce; it went off my leg and right to my stick, and that doesn't happen very often, but you have to get to those hard areas," Calvert said. "The point men were getting the pucks through, and we did a good job once we got the puck below the hash marks."

The Devils thought they tied the game 8:28 into the third period when Henrique tipped a shot past Bobrovsky from the slot on a delayed penalty, but referee Jean Hebert disallowed the goal after it was ruled Columbus forward Gregory Campbell had control of the puck a few seconds earlier.

"The referee told me [Columbus] had touched it and shot it into the corner [before the goal was scored]," Hynes said.

Calvert said he stopped skating when he saw Campbell hit the puck.

"They were pressing for that one, and [Henrique was my man] in the slot on the disallowed goal," Calvert said. "I thought [Campbell] touched the puck, so I might have stopped skating there. I thought it was a good call, the right call. We were able to shut them down the rest of the way."

The Devils generated one shot on the power play with Nick Foligno in the box for holding.

The Blue Jackets denied the Devils on five power-play chances; Bobrovsky stopped seven shots when New Jersey had the man-advantage. The Devils entered having scored at least one power-play goal in five straight games.

"The penalty kill came up big," Blue Jackets defenseman Jack Johnson said. "Our goalie was our best penalty killer."

Dubinsky, who missed six games with an elbow infection, said Bobrovsky was the difference.

"[Bobrovsky] was phenomenal, without a doubt," Dubinsky said. "He gave us a great chance. Schneider played really good too. We know he's been on the top of his game this year, and in the first period he kept them in it, so it was definitely a goaltending battle and wouldn't expect anything less in New Jersey."

The Devils held the Blue Jackets without a shot on goal in the second period until Ryan Johansen was credited with one at 16:51. It was the first of six straight against Schneider in a span of 1:45.

"You have to give Columbus some credit, but we did have opportunities and possession time in the offensive zone but just didn't shoot the puck," Devils coach John Hynes said. "We couldn't get those pucks to the net."

New Jersey gained a 1-1 tie in the second when Henrique scored his Devils-leading 10th of the season at 3:33. After taking a pass from Mike Cammalleri in the left circle, Henrique took a shot that beat Bobrovsky over his left shoulder. The assist by Cammalleri, his 15th of the season, equaled his total for 2014-15.

Karlsson gave the Blue Jackets a 1-0 lead on their ninth shot 8:51 into the first. He scored his third of the season off a rebound at the left post.

Dubinsky said Tortorella has made each player accountable since taking over as coach.

"He's demanding, aggressive, and likes to play aggressive and push the pace," Dubinsky said. "I think he's a guy that's good at getting guys to take their game to the next level. I think some guys are doing that, and some need to continue to work on that, but overall he's been really good for us."

Devils left wing Patrik Elias made his season debut after missing the first 20 games with a right-knee injury. He played 14:50 with two shots on goal.

"I thought it was a good first game for [Elias] to come back," Hynes said. "He looked good, quick, and I thought he was really smart the way he managed his shifts. He even got to play some special teams, and he had a good work ethic."

The Devils play the first of a home-and-home against the Montreal Canadiens on Friday. The Canadiens will not have Carey Price, who was injured in a 5-1 win against the New York Rangers on Wednesday.


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