The Columbus Blue Jackets will try to build off the first playoff victory in club history when they host the Pittsburgh Penguins in tonight’s
Game 3 battle is expect to be hostile and electric at Nationwide Arena.
Columbus had been 0-5 all-time in postseason games before taking Game 2 in Pittsburgh on Saturday with a 4-3 double-overtime victory. The victory not only ended the Blue Jackets’ playoff win drought, but also tied this best of seven series against the Penguins at one game.
Matt Calvert’s second goal of the contest, coming at 1:10 of the second overtime, gave Columbus its first-ever playoff victory. The Blue Jackets are playing in just their second postseason since entering the league in the 2000-01 season. Columbus first made the playoffs in 2009, but was swept in four games by Detroit Red Wings.
Brandon Dubinsky fought off a Pens player behind the net and fed the puck in front to Cam Atkinson, who missed from point-blank range on the right side. However, the rebound came out to Calvert, who put the puck into the net.
Sergei Bobrovsky stopped 39 pucks to record his first playoff win after nine appearances and three losses. The 2013 Vezina Trophy winner was 0-2 in seven postseason appearances .
Brian Gibbons picked up a pair of first-period scores for the Penguins, as it looked early on, like they were going to run away with game 2, thank goodness that wasnt the case to be.
Pittsburgh overcame a 3-1 deficit to take Game 1 by a 4-3 score, but on Saturday it was the Blue Jackets who came back. The Pens led 2-0 less than five minutes into the game and carried a 3-1 lead into the second period, but they went the scorless after that.
Calvert scored a short-handed goal at 7:31 of the second period and Jack Johnson’s power-play goal tied it at 3-3 with 6:01 remaining left in the third period.
The young and upbeat Jackets now have a chance to take control of the series with it all tied up and Games 3 and 4 being played at Nationwide Arena.
The Blue Jackets went 22-15-4 inside Nationwide this season.
Columbus has played the first two games without forward Nick Foligno, but he is expected to play in tonight’s Game 3. Foligno was tied for fourth on theteam with 18 goals in 70 games this season.
Puck drops at 7pm, catch on FSN OHIO, or the NBC Sports Network.