Columbus “Blue Collar” Jackets Out Work Bolts

By on November 25, 2016

Tampa, Fla. — The Tampa Bay Lightning took on the Columbus Jackets earlier tonight at the “Oil Can,” and it was another sell out crowd on this Black Friday and the Bolts were wearing their alternate black jerseys. Former Lightning coach John Tortorella was in the house, as his 10-5-3 Jackets faced-off against Coopers 13-7-1 Bolts.  

Ben Bishop was perfect against the Columbus Blue Jackets last year, he would get the start in goal tonight for Tampa.

After the game head coach Jon Cooper would call it, “A stinker.”

The Blue Jackets came to work and went to work they went quickly,  off to a great start as #10 Alexander Wennberg beat Ben Bishop glove side, it was an easy goal for the center as the right side of the net was wide open. He was assisted by #20 Brandon Saad and #7 Jack Johnson.  And less then four minutes in the Blue Jacket had the lead. 

Defenseman #28 Luke Witowski gave the Jackets a chance for scoring on the man advantage with a tripping penalty against former Nashville Predator #3 Seth Jones. The Blue Jackets were quickly able to capitalize on the power play and score their second goal of the game #71 Nick Foligno was able to flip it by Bishop with the help of #13 Sam Atkinson and #8 Zach Werenski.   A major defensive break down by your Tampa Bay Lightning.  Columbus out-shot Tampa 10-4 in the first and ended up with a 38-28 shot advantage for the game.

The Bolts were going to need to play better defense in their zone if they were going to stand a chance of coming back in this game.  The Blue Jackets continued to dominate the play and had an excellent scoring chance at the 14 minute mark of the first. Thank goodness for the pipes.  At the end of the first it was Columbus Blue Jackets 2, Tampa Bay Lightning 0 with Columbus clearly being the superior team tonight. 

The Bolts came out skating a little more in the second period, that’s the only way to win at this game.  Moving your feet is key.  At least the fans were treated to some good tunes during a TV time out, unfortunately it might be the most excitement they get tonight.

Midway through the second period, the Blue Jackets were dominating the ice leading the shots on goal count 13-7.  The Bolts were just getting out hustled and out muscled.  And just then I was “wowed” by a beautiful wrap around across the crease pass by #9 Tyler Johnson and tipped in by #86 Nikita Kucherov.  It was a text book Lightning goal.  Before the Lightning celebration was over the Blue Jackets answered back with a goal by #43 Scott Hartnell who was able to capitalize on some heavy traffic in front of Lightning goal tender to tipe in a rebound.  The score was now 3-1.  Unbelievably the shot count was so heavily weighted in favor of the Blue Jackets at 20-8.

Fire the Tesla coils again at 18:28 in the second period a Lightning goal scored by #5 Jason Garrison, with #51 Valterri Filppula setting up the goal and #28 Luke Witowski helping out.  It was a valiant effort by the whole line, and the score was now 3-2 Jackets.  There was new life in the building, and 20 more minutes to score a couple more.

They came out slow in the third but due to a Blue Jacket delayed penalty, pulled goalie and six skaters were able to score the tying goal at 3:37 in the third.  It was a nice play by Nikita Kucherov, that put the puck on the tape of Ondrej Palat to tie the game at 3-3.

 There was a scrum behind the Lightning goal with#62 Andrej Sustr and #34 Josh Anderson receiving matching roughing penalties.  The Blue Jackets scored quickly in the four on four contest at 4:47 Jackets #20 Brandon Saad blasted one by Bishop for the go ahead goal.

With the shot count still lopsided in favor of Columbus 33-19, one couldn’t help but imagine that they were going to notch another goal, light the lamp or whatever and sure enough at 11:13 in the third Jackets ##13 Cam Atkinson wrists one into the Lightning net to make the score 5-3 in their favor.  A short-handed score as Victor Hedman just gave the puck away to the fore-checking Atkinson.

This was a game that #30 Big Ben Bishop would want to put behind him, along with whole Lightning gang.  Let’s look forward to the Boston Bruins on the road, and then worry about this Ohio Blue Jacket team that we face again in Columbus on the November 29, 2016.  Nice game Torts.

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