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game recap

Blue Jackets handle Lightning in Game 2, extend series lead

Duchene has goal, three assists for Columbus

by Corey Long / NHL.com Correspondent

Duchene jams home rebound for PPG

CBJ@TBL, Gm2: Duchene cleans up own rebound for PPG

R1, Gm2: Matt Duchene is denied on his initial attempt, but he jams the rebound into the back of the net on the power play in the 2nd period

  • 00:59 •

TAMPA -- Matt Duchene had a goal and three assists, and the Columbus Blue Jackets defeated the Tampa Bay Lightning 5-1 in Game 2 of the Eastern Conference First Round at Amalie Arena on Friday.

Zach Werenski and Artemi Panarin each had a goal and an assist, and Sergei Bobrovsky made 23 saves for the Blue Jackets.

"Oh, I liked how our team played," Columbus coach John Tortorella said. "I think we're getting better and better in certain situations. We're going to have to keep getting better and better. I thought we played better than Game 1. We're going to have to play better in Game 3 than we did in Game 2."

 

[WATCH: Blue Jackets vs. Lightning Game 2 highlights | Complete series coverage]

 

Mikhail Sergachev scored for the Lightning, who have lost four straight games in the Stanley Cup Playoffs dating to the 2018 Eastern Conference Final against the Washington Capitals. Andrei Vasilevskiy made 22 saves.

The Blue Jackets lead the best-of-7 series 2-0. Game 3 is at Columbus on Sunday. The Blue Jackets also won the first two games in the first round last season against the Capitals but lost the series in six games.

Video: CBJ@TBL, Gm2: Nash picks the corner on Vasilevskiy

"We're in a tough position, but we're not going to quit," Lightning captain Steven Stamkos said of Tampa Bay, which had 62 wins this season, tying the 1995-96 Detroit Red Wings for the most in NHL history. "We've got to take a page out of their book and go on the road and win a hockey game. We just got to focus on Game 3. It's tough, it just hasn't gone our way right now."

Lightning forward Nikita Kucherov received a major boarding penalty and a game misconduct for a hit on Blue Jackets defenseman Markus Nutivaara at 15:34 of the third period. The sequence started with his minor penalty for tripping Nutivaara. Kucherov, who led the NHL in scoring during the regular season, will have a hearing with the NHL Department of Player Safety on Saturday.

Cam Atkinson gave the Blue Jackets a 1-0 lead at 5:15 of the first period by tipping in a pass from Duchene. Werenski made it 2-0 with a power-play goal at 11:44 off a face-off win by Duchene.

Video: CBJ@TBL, Gm2: Werenski scores off draw on power play

"When we're all playing with confidence and moving the puck around we're a dangerous power-play unit," Atkinson said. "One thing we've been harping on is … not being just like a one-and-done power play but being hard when you don't have the puck and trying to get the puck back. What makes the biggest difference is winning the draw."

Duchene scored on a rebound at 1:28 of the second period for his first Stanley Cup Playoff goal, making it 3-0.

"Obviously as an offensive guy, once one kind of bounces your way you're starting to feel good," Duchene said. "It's like you've got some adrenaline and your head clears a little bit more. Just one of those nights, I guess."

Sergachev made it 3-1 with a point shot that got through traffic in front at 5:00 of the third. The goal ended the Lightning's scoring drought at 87:09. Columbus, which trailed 3-0 in the first period of Game 1, scored the next seven goals in the series.

"If you asked us at the start of the series that this will be the result, obviously, we'd be pretty surprised," Tampa Bay defenseman Dan Girardi said. "But we have to give them some credit. They've been playing two hard games, two 60-minute games. It seems like when we do make a mistake, they're making us pay for it."

Riley Nash made it 4-1 at 9:06 of the third with a shot that beat Vasilevskiy top shelf. Panarin made it 5-1 at 12:15 with a one-timer off a backdoor pass from Duchene.

Video: CBJ@TBL, Gm2: Panarin finishes pretty passing play

"Guys did a great job again," Bobrovsky said. "We stuck together. It was a tough game. The score was 5-1, but still it was a really tight game, and I thought the guys did a great job."

 

They said it

"I think our start really set the tone. Obviously getting that first goal was big. They're a heck of a team over there. It's taken everything we've got. We know they're going to be coming very hungry into Columbus. We're going to be ready for it. We want to be ready for it. So, we'll enjoy the win tonight, travel back home tomorrow and get ready." -- Blue Jackets center Matt Duchene

"The one thing I do know about being with this group is, they find a way, and I'm sitting here and we're going to be in Columbus 48 hours from now, and there's no other bench I want to be behind but ours. That's how much faith I have in this group." -- Lightning coach Jon Cooper

 

Need to know

Teams that win the first two games of a best-of-7 series on the road have a series record of 72-20 (.783). … Werenski fought Tampa Bay center Brayden Point at 15:11 of the first period and finished with a Gordie Howe Hat Trick. "I probably won't ever get one again, but it was a pretty cool moment for sure," Werenski said. … Stamkos, Kucherov and Point combined for seven shots and a minus-3 rating. …The Lightning had 37 hits. …The Blue Jackets had 16 blocked shots. 

 

What's next

Game 3 of Eastern Conference First Round at Nationwide Arena on Sunday (7 p.m. ET; NBCSN, SN360, TVAS, FS-O, SUN)

Video: Duchene tallies four points, leads Jackets to victory

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