Blue Jackets beat Penguins 5-4 to avoid sweep

Blue Jackets beat Penguins 5-4 to avoid sweep

Pittsburgh's Jake Guentzel gave the Penguins a 5-4 win and a commanding 3-0 lead in the first-round series with a goal 13:10 into overtime.

Cam Atkinson scored two first-period goals for the Blue Jackets.

Pittsburgh won the game 5-4 in overtime for a 3-0 lead in their first-round series. He mostly settled down as the game went on, and made some crucial saves to keep the Pens in the game - including his overtime mask save on Brandon Dubinsky. Once they got their footing, they took it to Columbus with the kind of focus and offensive potency that the Blue Jackets simply don't possess. And we should also know that getting this series over with, as quickly as possible, would be a huge benefit for the Penguins heading into the second round.

Well Fleury is proving that he deserves to be the real starting goalie. He's Sullivan's guy, plain and simple.

The Penguins lead the best-of-seven series 3-0.

They still have the best players in the series.

In the last two games especially, the Canadiens have done a good job of preventing the Rangers from using the up-tempo style they're best at, clamping down defensively and forcing NY to dump and chase. He owns one goal in three postseason contests.

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The Blue Jackets come out with plenty of energy but seem to falter towards the end of the game. Werenski returned in the third period with a full facemask and a significant cut and bruise under his right eye. And not only has each game been a marathon, they've been all out sprints. Even though they got run under again early on, they showed that they can turn up the heat on Columbus and make things miserable for prolonged stretches of time.

Game 3 is Sunday in St. Louis.

I'll spare everyone the walk down memory lane that is the Rangers series of 2014.

This season, however, has seen a veteran Penguins team struggle away from home. They have increased their production this year and are a big reason why the Penguins are winning.

That all changed a year ago. What a insane back-and-forth few minutes that was.

Giving defensemen Nick Holdman and Pavel Buchnevich some more time on the ice, starting aggressive and managing the puck afterward, then tightening up for the waning minutes of play, NY finally found a way to prevent another dose of late Habs heroics and, more importantly, snap its home playoff losing streak.

After only scoring two goals combined in the first two games of the series, Columbus scored three goals in just over six minutes of the first period. That still wasn't enough to slow down the Pittsburgh Penguins, who dealt the Blue Jackets a third straight playoff loss and put them on the brink of elimination. The Wild's only goals, both by Zach Parise, have been on 6-on-5 and 5-on-3 situations.