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Dubinsky’s OT Game-Winner Lifts Blue Jackets Past Predators, 3-2

The Columbus Blue Jackets came out on the right end of a thrilling 3-2 overtime victory against the Nashville Predators at home on Thursday at Nationwide Arena.

It was the Blue Jackets’ first game since winning another close game in shootout fashion against Boston on Monday night.

This game, like the meeting earlier in the week with Boston, was action-packed down the stretch.

Things got off to a pretty slow start with a lot of mediocre hockey, while both teams tried to get in the groove of the game.

It wasn’t until the end of the first period that things started to heat up.

The Blue jackets took the lead right at the end of the first period at the 19:38 mark. A pretty tip in goal from Ryan Craig put the Jackets on top.

The goal was assisted by Cam Atkinson and Gregory Campbell.

The Predators answered with a goal of their own midway through the second period. The goal was scored by Anthony Bitetto on a 15-foot snap shot. The second period ended all tied up at one.

Things got interesting in the third period, when Nashville Predators defenseman Yannick Weber scored a goal early in the period. 

Two failed power plays later, with time running out for the Jackets, an unexpected hero emerged in the form of veteran center Paul Bitner.

A beautiful backhand shot by Bitner, assisted by Brandon Dubinsky, tied the game at two with only four minutes left in regulation.

For the second straight game, 60 minutes wasn’t enough to get the job done.

The game went into overtime, but not for long.

After just over two minutes of sudden death overtime, Dubinsky slung an aggressive snap shot from 12 feet out to give the Blue Jackets their second win of the preseason.

Nationwide Arena erupted as if this was a playoff matchup.

Although this was only a preseason game, as we were reminded time and time again by the broadcasting team, there was A LOT to like about the Blue Jackets’ performance.

It was clear that the team was on the same page. Columbus outplayed Nashville in most statistics, the most important being shots on goal. The Jackets had 40 SOG to Nashville’s 27.

Everyone was getting involved and that made a big difference. However, the Jackets did go 0-for-6 on power plays, which is something that can hurt even the best of teams.

They’ll have to get better on the power play for true success.

Overall, it was a very promising performance for the Blue Jackets. The veterans led the way in goals, but the youthful stars on the team pulled their weight as well.

If we continue to see performances like what they’ve done in the last two games, the Columbus Blue Jackets will be competitive in the regular season.

Next up, the Blue Jackets host the Pittsburgh Penguins on Sunday evening at 4 pm for the fourth of eight total preseason games.

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