In Thursday night's contest against the Buffalo Sabres, the Columbus Blue Jackets, after yielding 3 consecutive goals, tied the game with just over a minute left, only to lose the weeknight bout 4-3 in overtime.
Despite the disappointing loss, there were a few positive highlights from recent OHL call-up, Liam Foudy, and defenseman, Vladislav Gavrikov.
So without further delay, let's discuss tonight's Three Things:
FOUDY'S FIRST POINT
Liam Foudy, the Blue Jackets' 2018 first-round draft pick, picked up his first NHL point with an assist on Boone Jenner's tip-in goal. Foudy obtained his first point in only his second game with the Columbus club amidst a week of heavy travel between his NHL and OHL teams.
In addition to his first point, Foudy played an excellent game on a line with Boone Jenner and Gustav Nyquist. The three have seemed to find some instant chemistry, being able to retain offensive zone time with expertly executed cycling. The young forward has demonstrated so far that he's not out of place on an NHL roster.
GAVVY'S NEW GEAR
While many assumed Zach Werenski would be the defenseman to fill in during Seth Jones' absence, Vladislav Gavrikov's performance tonight suggested that he would like a chance to prove himself a top option on the team.
The 24-year old Russian was a consistent offensive threat against Buffalo, leading to several scoring chances and a beautiful set-up for Nathan Gerbe's opening goal.
While he only has 13 points on the year, Gavrikov has impressed all season with his vision and occasional playmaking flair. Perhaps the increased role with Jones sidelined will allow Gavrikov to continue to display his offensive talent with correlating production.
LOW-SCORING FEBRUARY CONTINUES
Over the course of this season, the Blue Jackets have never been one of the top offenses in the NHL. Regardless, the team has really struggled to score since February 1st. Since the first day of the current month, Columbus has averaged only 1.86 goals per game and are 28th in the NHL in goals scored per game in that time span.
While injuries have been the story of the season for the Blue Jackets, the limited forward group may be finally taking effect on the team's performance.
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