Aftermath: Game No. 1

Saturday, 01.19.2013 / 11:35 PM
By Rob Mixer - BlueJackets.com / CBJ Today

The nuts and bolts of tonight's game: Sergei Bobrovsky (BOBROVSKY) made 32 saves, a handful more in the shootout, Artem Anisimov and Nick Foligno scored in regulation, and the Blue Jackets hopped on their flight home with two points in hand.

Fun night at the rink, eh? Let's break it down. You can dance if you want to, but that "break it down" (in this context) means that I'm going to analyze the game. Your call, I'm cool with either.

Ah yes, the game. There was a lot to like from a Columbus perspective, in particular how the Blue Jackets countered after the Predators scored an early goal in the first period. There was no panic, no flustered-ness, no meltdown...just a collective "alright, we've got this" and commitment to their team game.

I've collected three main thoughts after this 3-2 shootout win to kick off the 2012-13 season:

1. Resolve: as Blue Jackets coach Todd Richards said post-game, it would have been easy for his club to fold up the tents after the Martin Erat goal 39 seconds into the game and with Nashville riding opening night momentum, but they stuck to their guns. They got an opportunity on the power play later in the first period and cashed in, courtesy of Foligno's first goal in a Blue Jackets sweater. Ryan Ellis gave the Predators a late lead in the first, but Columbus bounced back and won the second period to pull even headed to the third.

2. The new guys: Foligno, Anisimov, Bobrovksy...all (and more) had a heavy hand in tonight's outcome. Foligno got it started with a sick re-direct of Tyutin's point shot on the power play, Anisimov was the game's best player with a pair of backhand dazzlers, and Bobrovsky did his thing between the pipes. I thought Adrian Aucoin had a solid game on the blue line with John Moore, and those two did some good work as the third pairing. Brandon Dubinsky didn't show up on the scoresheet, but he and Anisimov were great on the cycle and put pressure on the Predators' defense all night long.

3. Solid team defense: Richards said throughout training camp that he wanted his club to be tough defensively and be able to spend as little time as possible inside its own end. The Predators had their trademark "long shifts" in the Blue Jackets zone tonight, but far fewer than we've been accustomed to seeing over the years. Jack Johnson and James Wisniewski played a lot of minutes tonight (25:57 and 23:39 respectively), and though they didn't get as much power play time as they're used to, I found the pairing to be very efficient at even strength. Tyutin and Nikitin were their usual steady selves, and I found it interesting that Richards employed them as the No. 1 power play point men. The forwards tracked back well, the third man high in the zone was responsible and didn't cheat, and there was a consistent "five man unit" traveling up and down the ice for Columbus.

So, there you have it. A big opening night win for the Blue Jackets at Bridgestone Arena and undoubtedly a happy flight home on Blue Jackets Air. Check back tomorrow as we get set for opening night at Nationwide Arena...I suspect there will be some electricity in the building.

SCHEDULE

HOME
AWAY
PROMOTIONAL

STANDINGS

EASTERN CONFERENCE
  TEAM GP W L OT GF GA PTS
1 p - BOS 82 54 19 9 261 177 117
2 y - PIT 82 51 24 7 249 207 109
3 x - TBL 82 46 27 9 240 215 101
4 x - MTL 82 46 28 8 215 204 100
5 x - NYR 82 45 31 6 218 193 96
6 x - PHI 82 42 30 10 236 235 94
7 x - CBJ 82 43 32 7 231 216 93
8 x - DET 82 39 28 15 222 230 93
9 WSH 82 38 30 14 235 240 90
10 NJD 82 35 29 18 197 208 88
11 OTT 82 37 31 14 236 265 88
12 TOR 82 38 36 8 231 256 84
13 CAR 82 36 35 11 207 230 83
14 NYI 82 34 37 11 225 267 79
15 FLA 82 29 45 8 196 268 66
16 BUF 82 21 51 10 157 248 52

STATS

2013-2014 PLAYOFFS
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
J. Johnson 3 3 1 1 4
B. Dubinsky 3 0 4 0 4
M. Calvert 3 2 1 3 3
R. Johansen 3 1 2 0 3
B. Jenner 3 1 2 -1 3
D. Savard 3 0 3 1 3
C. Atkinson 3 1 1 1 2
D. MacKenzie 3 1 0 0 1
M. Letestu 3 1 0 0 1
J. Skille 3 0 1 -1 1
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
S. Bobrovsky 1 2 0 .904 3.32
 
Columbusbluejackets.com is the official Web site of the Columbus Blue Jackets. The Columbus Blue Jackets and columbusbluejackets.com are trademarks of The Columbus Blue Jackets Hockey Club.  NHL and the word mark and image of the Stanley Cup are registered trademarks and the NHL Shield and NHL Conference logos are trademarks of the National Hockey League. All NHL logos and marks and NHL team logos and marks as well as all other proprietary materials depicted herein are the property of the NHL and the respective NHL teams and may not be reproduced without the prior written consent of NHL Enterprises, L.P.  Copyright © 2009 Columbus Blue Jackets Hockey Club and the National Hockey League.  All Rights Reserved. View the Columbus Blue Jackets Privacy Policy AdChoices NHL.com Terms of Service
Please use the feedback form if you have any recommendations or comments.