Three Things: Big Day for Texier, Injuries Mount, and a Questionable Goalie Pull

By Rob Mixer on December 14, 2019 at 3:07 pm
Ottawa Senators defenseman Mark Borowiecki (74) fights with Columbus Blue Jacketsv right wing Josh Anderson (77) in the first period at the Canadian Tire Centre.
Marc DesRosiers – USA TODAY Sports

If this game wasn't a microcosm of the Blue Jackets' season, we're not sure what is. 

Did they compete? At times, yes. Were they worryingly punchless in the offensive zone through two periods and unwilling to match the Ottawa Senators' work ethic? You could say that, too. Give the Blue Jackets credit for fighting back from a 3-1 deficit through two periods, but they had their chances to finish this game off and didn't. 

And despite the early 1 p.m. start, this game had a little bit of everything – and most of it was not good until the final 20, when Columbus out-shot Ottawa by a 20-4 margin to score twice and force overtime. 

Here are today's three things.

Don't Mess With Tex(ier)

Alexandre Texier's two goals pulled the Blue Jackets off the rug and back into this game, and this came after his dreadful turnover in the first period. 

That was a solid finish to make it 3-2, and then, he took a Pierre-Luc Dubois pass and beat Anders Nilsson to tie the game. At that moment, it felt like the Blue Jackets were putting a grip on the game as regulation time ticked away.

Texier is one of the Jackets' promising young players and they need him to find form again, and with this two-goal effort today, it feels like he might be getting back into a groove. 


The Blue Jackets have had some good fortune with injuries the last couple of season. This year, it's been quite different. No Markus Nutivaara, no Zach Werenski, and today they lost three players to injury: Sonny Milano, Josh Anderson, and Ryan Murray. In the span of a few minutes. 

Milano was hit into the boards by Mark Borowiecki – accidental, it appeared – but he was down on the ice for a few moments before being helped off the ice. Anderson fought Borowiecki on the ensuing face-off and played a couple of shifts more, but did not return to the game. 

Murray's injury is more mysterious, as he wasn't on the bench late in the second period and also did not return. The Blue Jackets played most of this game with 10 forwards and a big chunk of it with five defensemen, so on that note, it's impressive that they were able to come back and get a point. 

Quick Hook

Elvis Merzlikins started this game, but played only 20 minutes. 

He made six saves on eight shots before getting pulled in favor of Joonas Korpisalo. Perhaps it was the disallowed third goal that John Tortorella didn't like? The first goal, off the stick of Anthony Duclair, was soft and quite stoppable. The second was a 2-on-1, but the third was a wrist shot that you'd like to get a save on – even if it was eventually overturned for an offsides review. 

So, the Merzlikins saga goes on. He's still without a win in eight NHL starts but you can't say he's not getting the opportunities. 

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