Despite A Strong Outing from Elvis Merzlikins, Blue Jackets Drop 3-2 Shootout Decision in Montreal

By Rob Mixer on November 12, 2019 at 9:58 pm
Columbus Blue Jackets defenseman Ryan Murray (27) plays the puck and Montreal Canadiens forward Jonathan Drouin (92) defends during the second period at the Bell Centre.
Eric Bolte – USA TODAY Sports

A one-goal lead with less than two minutes remaining. Gone.

A power play in overtime. Woof.

A strong outing from a rookie goaltender. Good!

And, one point from it.

  1 2 3 OT SO F
BLUE JACKETS 1 0 1 0 0 2
CANADIENS 0 0 2 0 1 3

That's how it's going for the Blue Jackets, who got goals from Eric Robinson and Zach Werenski in regulation, but went 0-for-3 against Carey Price in the shootout and fell, 3-2, in Montreal tonight.

Werenski was in on the offense for Columbus throughout the night, and his go-ahead goal with 1:51 remaining gave the Blue Jackets a 2-1 lead...albeit briefly.

Tomas Tatar tied the game with 40 seconds left in an extra attacker situation to send the game to overtime.

And this was, without question, Elvis Merzlikins' best performance in his young NHL career. But at some point, you need to get a result – both for yourself and for your team.

He was brilliant in the second period as Montreal started to tilt the ice and had nearly 70 percent of 5-on-5 shot attempts, but goaltending and penalty killing helped get the Blue Jackets into the third period with a 1-0 lead.

That 1-0 lead was supplied by Robinson, who was part of the Blue Jackets' impressive fourth line tonight and they opened the scoring. Emil Bemstrom corralled a point shot from Zach Werenski that went wide of the net, centered it to Robinson's stick and that was all it took. Robinson tipped the puck by Carey Price to record the first goal of his NHL career.

Injury Update

Ryan Murray was activated off injured reserve for tonight's game after missing six games with a broken hand. He blocked a shot off his knee in the second period and briefly left the game, but returned for the third period.

Next Up

The Blue Jackets return home to Nationwide Arena to face the St. Louis Blues on Friday night, with puck drop set for 7 p.m. on Hockey Fights Cancer Night.