Three Things: Poor Second Period Condemns Blue Jackets to Fifth Straight Loss

By Jacob Nitzberg on February 16, 2020 at 9:04 pm
Feb 16, 2020; Newark, New Jersey, USA; Columbus Blue Jackets right wing Oliver Bjorkstrand (28) skates with the puck while being defended by New Jersey Devils defenseman Will Butcher (8) during the first period at Prudential Center.
Ed Mulholland-USA TODAY Sports

Somehow, someway, the Blue Jackets couldn't get two points tonight.

Despite generating 53 shots on goal in regulation, plus two more in overtime, they fell to Mackenzie Blackwood and the Devils in a shootout, 4-3.

A ten minute and 35 second stretch in the second period was the Blue Jackets' undoing tonight, as the Devils scored three unanswered goals. 

Let's get into tonight's three things.

Peeke Gets #1

Blue Jackets defenseman Andrew Peeke scored his first NHL goal just 2:28 into the first period, capitalizing on a rebound.

Peeke gave the Blue Jackets a 1-0 lead, and although they didn't get two points tonight, you can bet this will be a night he'll remember for a long time.

Second Period Nightmares

The Blue Jackets headed into the second period feeling good about themselves after jumping out to a 2-0 lead in the first period. Unfortunately, the Devils came out strong and ran over the Blue Jackets for the majority of the period.

Goals from Joey Anderson (2), Nicholas Merkley (1), and Kyle Palmieri (22) in a ten minute and 35-second span gave the Devils a 3-2 advantage. The Blue Jackets were unable to control the game as they were in the first period.

No Finish

With 55 shots on goal, you'd hope for more than three goals. However, as we've seen so often this season, the Blue Jackets couldn't put away the Devils early, or score *that* critical goal down the stretch.

It's no secret that the Blue Jackets have a plethora of offensive talent sidelined. Cam Atkinson, Alexandre Texier, Josh Anderson, and Alexander Wennberg are all injured, and it's reflecting in the Blue Jackets' current scoring abilities. 

Columbus sits at 26th out of 31 teams in goals per game, at just 2.6. Will GM Jarmo Kekalainen look to acquire a scorer at the trade deadline, or will he hope that Anderson, Atkinson and co. will be healthy in time? 

We'll just have to see.

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