Man, they needed this one.
The Columbus Blue Jackets began their game against the Vancouver Canucks four points out of a playoff spot with two games in hand. It wouldn't be dramatic to say that if they lost this one, they would be in full on panic mode.
They began the first period looking nervous and tentative like they had in prior games. Until Josh Anderson scored, it looked like it may be the same performance that they have seen in prior games. Luckily, Anderson had other plans and led Columbus to a significant period.
The second period was more kind to the Blue Jackets as Pierre-Luc Dubois and Ryan Dzingel found the net. It looked like traditional Blue Jacket hockey as they took the time and space given to them. Not much was needed; they were just in the right place at the right time.
The third period saw an Oliver Bjorkstrand goal and another goal from Josh Anderson. It was more of the same, and the game turned into a thrashing. They dominated every aspect of the game again.
It didn't take an A+ effort from the Blue Jackets to win tonight. They could've dialed down the intensity, but this game was everything Columbus needed. It cleanses the palate and allows them to come home with momentum. They get to face a divisional foe and the team they're competing against for a spot in the playoffs in their next two games.
Time to put up or shut up.
Ryan Murray is still out with an undisclosed upper-body injury. Scott Harrington is day-to-day after taking a maintenance game. Nick Foligno is still out dealing with a personal matter.
The Blue Jackets will next play on Tuesday, March 26 against the New York Islanders at Nationwide Arena at 7:00 pm.
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