Three Things: Billy Sweezey's NHL Debut, Not Shut Out Today, Kirill 'The Thrill'

By Will Chase on February 26, 2023 at 5:20 pm
Minnesota Wild's Kirill Kaprizov skates behind the net, followed by Columbus Blue Jackets' Emil Bemstrom at Xcel Energy Center.
Matt Blewett-USA TODAY Sports

Kirill 'the thrill.'

Kirill Kaprizov scored in overtime with 19.9 seconds left to cap off a wild comeback win for the Minnesota Wild on Sunday, 3-2, over the Columbus Blue Jackets.

Kaprizov scored all three Wild goals to complete his third career hat trick in the win from Xcel Energy Center. The Wild are on a six-game point streak.

Jared Spurgeon, Ryan Hartman, Matt Boldy, Joel Eriksson-Ek, Calen Addison, and Mats Zuccarello picked up the assists.

Mathieu Olivier and Liam Foudy scored for the Blue Jackets. Eric Robinson, Erik Gudbranson, and Emil Bemstrom all had assists.

Marc-Andre Fleury had 22 saves while Elvis Merzlikins made 41 stops.

Billy Sweezey's NHL Debut

Adam Boqvist was banged up during Saturday's win over the Edmonton Oilers, prompting the recall of Billy Sweezey.

Sure enough, Boqvist missed Sunday's game due to a lower-body injury and is considered day-to-day. That meant Sweezey would make his debut at the age of 27 years old. During the year in Cleveland, Sweezey has nine points (zero goals, nine assists) in 41 games for the Monsters.

Not Shut Out Today

The Blue Jackets were whitewashed against Fleury and the Wild on Thursday night. Not today.

Olivier scored his career-best fifth goal of the season at 16:20 of the first period with Robinson picking up the assist.

Kirill 'The Thrill'

Today was one of Merzlikins' best games of the season. But it didn't result in a win.

Shutting out the Wild for two periods, Minnesota poured an onslaught of pucks at Merzlikins and the Blue Jackets in the third period, outshooting Columbus 17-4, and 44-24 for the game.

Kaprizov scored twice in the period in a span of 5:45 with the second goal coming on the power play. Then he capped it off in style with the overtime game-winning goal and hat trick. Kaprizov led the game with eight shots on goal and leads the Wild with 71 points and 37 goals. He also had four hits.

For Merzlikins, it was his first start since the 3-2 overtime loss to the Arizona Coyotes on Sunday, Feb. 19.

Onto Buffalo

The Blue Jackets are in Buffalo to play the Sabres on Tuesday, Feb. 28 at 7:30 pm ET. The Blue Jackets fell to the Sabres, 9-4, on Dec. 7 in Columbus. Buffalo beat the Washington Capitals, 7-4, on Sunday in Buffalo.

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