Columbus Blue Jackets took a commanding 3-0 lead in the first-round Stanley Cup Playoffs against Tampa Bay Lightning with a 3-1 victory in front of an ignited Nationwide Arena.

Game Recap

Columbus had the advantage in the first period with 28-10 shot attempts and 12-3 shots on goal, although the first period ended scoreless.

Columbus was able to breakthrough with a 1-0 lead thanks to a 1:44 backhanded finish by Matt Duchene. Not long after at the 8:24 mark, Columbus came through with a power-play goal by Oliver Bjorkstrand into the far top corner which would give them a 2-0 lead heading into the third period.

The Lightning had a spark of what everyone had expected in the third period, although Sergei Bobrovsky was too much with his 30 saves. Adding to their power-play goal, the Jackets are 4-for-8 for the series; as the Lightning who led the regular season with best power play and kills are 0-for-5 and didn’t have a man advantage in Game 3.

Tampa Bay was able to break through with a 4:40 goal by Ondrej Palat bringing the score 2-1 with a pass from Erik Cernak.

Columbus was able to seal the deal with a 59.9 second shot by Cam Atkinson as he was able to finish the shot into an empty net which would lead to the Jackets first-ever 3-0 playoff series lead.

Quote from the Captain

The way we’re playing is the way you need to play to win hockey games […] we have to make sure we keep our foot on the gas. They’re obviously a team that’s dangerous. You can’t let up at all, but it’s nice to be able to deliver in a home game for our crowd.”   – Columbus Captain, Nick Foligno

History in The Making

This is the first time the Jackets have won three games in the same postseason. It’s also the first time the 2018-19 Lightning have failed to score multiple goals in consecutive games. It’s only the fifth time in the history NHL postseason competition that a team led the regular season in points but fell 0-3 in the first round of the playoffs.

Game 4 will be Tuesday night at Nationwide Arena at 7:00 PM ET.