Soak it in, folks.
The Blue Jackets won 7-3 tonight against Tampa Bay, giving them their first playoff series win as a franchise. It just happened to come against the President's Trophy winners in a sweep.
Nationwide Arena was electric for all sixty minutes. It was a perfect way to bring the series home in front of almost 20,000 screaming fans.
Alexandre Texier (2), Artemi Panarin, Matt Duchene, Seth Jones, Pierre-Luc Dubois, and Oliver Bjorkstrand got on the scoresheet tonight. Sergei Bobrovsky saved 30 of 33 shots, including some crucial saves late in the third period to preserve the Blue Jackets' lead.
Let's get into three things from a wonderful night.
Tex Gets His First Playoff Tally
Texier opened the scoring early in the first period with a wicked wrister on the power play, notching the first postseason goal of his career in a huge moment for the 19-year-old.
He picked his spot and made no mistake. The Blue Jackets are now 6-0-0 with Texier in the lineup, which many would argue is a good thing.
Later in the third period, Texier stole the puck in the offensive zone and held off two Tampa Bay defensemen for 15 seconds, much to the delight of the crowd. Finally, he added an empty-netter to make it 6-3, Columbus. It's Alexandre Texier's world, and folks, we're just living in it.
Six players scored seven goals tonight. The Blue Jackets' offense rolled through the entire series, and tonight was no exception. When offense can come from any forward at any time, it's almost impossible to defend a team.
The defensemen had some shaky moments but solidified when the Blue Jackets needed them most. Key poke checks from Dean Kukan saved goals. David Savard was his usual shot-blocking self. Seth Jones scored again. What a night.
Sergei Bobrovsky cannot be faulted for any of the three goals he allowed tonight, and he saved many more, including some grade-A chances.
It's a recipe for success when all three units are playing well, and that's what has propelled the Blue Jackets to a sweep over the juggernaut that was Tampa Bay.
Proved the Experts Wrong
No one, and I mean no one, picked the Blue Jackets to get their first series win in franchise history against the President's Trophy-winning Tampa Bay Lightning. And you can forget any talk about a sweep.
With their win tonight, the Blue Jackets did what everyone in the hockey world thought was impossible. They dominated and swept a Tampa Bay team widely regarded as one of the best NHL teams ever — on paper, that is.
What an absolutely unbelievable four games.