It’s been three days since the Blue Jackets stole Game One in the Stanley Cup Playoffs from the Washington Capitals, and the city of Columbus is still buzzing. Artemi Panarin was the star of the game, recording two assists and the game-winning goal in Overtime. Panarin and the Jackets had to overcome a 2-0 deficit, a myriad of injuries, and some questionable officiating, but they got the job done. Re-live the excitement with the full highlights here.
The win gave the Blue Jackets their first lead in a post-season series in franchise history. Tonight, they took to continue their momentum and grab another win before coming home to Columbus on Tuesday.
The Blue Jackets will be without forward Alexander Wennberg tonight, as he was the victim of a vicious hit in Game One. Captain Nick Foligno is expected to take Wennberg’s Center position on the second line alongside Boone Jenner and Thomas Vanek. Sonny Milano is expected to move into the lineup and play alongside Brandon Dubinsky and Josh Anderson.
The goaltenders will remain the same, as Sergei Bobrovsky played an incredible game on Thursday. The Capitals are sticking with Philipp Grubauer in net, even though he let in four goals Thursday, none of them were bad mistakes on his part. It will be interesting to see if Capitals head coach Barry Trotz decides to go back to his two-time Vezina Trophy winner, Braden Holtby at any point in the series.
The hardest part of a potential series win for the Jackets has already been completed. If they were to win the series, they’d have to win at least one game on the road, and that’s exactly what they did Thursday. If the Blue Jackets were to win again tonight, they’d head back to Columbus with a 2-0 lead and two games at home.
The Capitals aren’t going to go away easily, they’re going to come out with their hair on fire tonight trying to even the series. Expect a much cleaner game from the Caps, who got a little bit sloppy near the end of the game Thursday, taking two penalties in the final minutes. The puck drops tonight at 7:30pm in Capital One Arena, you can watch the game on Fox Sports Ohio.