Three Things: Blue Jackets Win Big In Ottawa, Will Face Tampa Bay In First Round Of NHL Playoffs

By Dan Dukart on April 6, 2019 at 9:47 pm
Alexandre Texier skates with the puck in front of Chris Tierney at the Canadian Tire Centre

The Columbus Blue Jackets won the season finale, 6-2 in Ottawa over the Senators, but the win didn't help their playoff standings. 

A night after a dramatic win to clinch a playoff berth, the Blue Jackets looked relaxed and dominated from start to finish in the win over the lowly Senators. Let's jump right into tonight's Three Things.

Texier Scores First Goal

Alexander Texier scored his first career NHL goal in his second career game, off a brilliant feed from Oliver Bjorkstrand, who remains white hot. Bjorkstrand found Texier on a 2-on-1 feed, and Texier beat Anders Nilsson to the stick side to make it 4-1.

Texier had a brilliant chance earlier in the game on a similar play with Bjorkstrand, a 2-on-0, but clanked the post. He finished the night with 1-0-1, a +3 rating, 3 shots, in 13:43. Not bad, kid.

When John Tortorella was asked if Texier will play in the playoffs, the coach's response was blunt and stern: "he's playing".

Bjorkstrand probably deserves his own "thing", scoring a goal and adding two assists in just 13:26 of ice. His goal was his ninth goal in the past 10 games. That's a heck of a way to enter the playoffs.

On the other hand...

Cam Can't Capitalize

Cam Atkinson tied a Blue Jackets franchise record, which sounds nice on paper. Atkinson tied Rick Nash for the team's all-time single-season goal record with 41 goals on the season, but was held without a goal for the final four games of the season.

Atkinson isn't with 3-2-5 in his past seven games, which is nothing to complain about, but on the other hand, he was well positioned to break the record, as he had scored 38 goals with 14 games to play. In the end, it's semantics, but for a guy who was on pace to score almost 50 goals this season, his cold end to the season is unfortunate.

Incoming: Tampa Bay

Good news: The Blue Jackets finished the year on a 7-1-0 run.

Bad news: The Blue Jackets will face the Tampa Bay Lightning in the first round of the playoffs. Arguably the best team of the past two decades, Tampa has had their way with Columbus in the teams' three games this year. In aggregate, Tampa has a 3-0-0 record against the Blue Jackets, outscoring them 17-3 in three not-that-close games. 

The Blue Jackets will face a team in the first round that had 128 points in the regular season, going 62-16-4. They're the only team in the NHL that won more than 30 games at both home and on the road. They're also the only team that had three players with 40 or more goals. They'll come in as prohibitive favorites over the Blue Jackets. 

Stay with 1st Ohio Battery for additional information on the times and dates of the 2019 Stanley Cup Playoffs. 

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