Bobrovsky makes 31 saves in Jackets win over Isles
COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — Boone Jenner and Mark Letestu each had a goal and an assist, and Sergei Bobrovsky stopped 31 shots for his second shutout of the week to lead the Columbus Blue Jackets past the New York Islanders 4-0 on Sunday night.
The Blue Jackets, desperate to hang on to a playoff spot in the Eastern Conference, matched a season high with three power-play goals.
Jack Johnson and Ryan Murray ended long droughts with goals, and Brandon Dubinsky had two assists. Bobrovsky, who won at Philadelphia 2-0 on Thursday, earned his fifth shutout of the season.
Anders Nilsson made 29 saves for the Islanders, who had their seven-game point streak end.
Columbus won at home after going 1-4-2 in its last seven games at Nationwide Arena.
Columbus began the day with 85 points, two behind third-place Philadelphia in the Metropolitan Division while holding the second wild-card spot.
New Jersey and Toronto are now three points back, with Washington another point behind those teams.
Bobrovsky improved to 10-2 against the Islanders while allowing just under two goals a game.
The Islanders, despite being without top players John Tavares and Kyle Okposo, had gone 5-0-2 in their previous seven games with a lineup stocked with rookies.
The Blue Jackets had recently failed to convert on 36 consecutive power plays, but they have turned things around. They scored on their first two power plays against New York.
Jenner got the first with a second effort. Camped at the doorstep, he tipped a shot by Letestu that Nilsson got a piece of, but the puck slipped between his pads and rested behind him, just short of the goal line. It sat there for 3 seconds before Jenner worked his way around the goalie and jammed it in for his 14th goal at 4:26.
On their next power play, the Blue Jackets swiveled the puck from the left boards to right, with Johnson unleashing a one-timer at 13:10 to make it 2-0. It was his first goal in 21 games and fifth this season.
Jenner earned an assist on Columbus’ third goal midway through the second period. He carried the puck through the neutral zone, fed Letestu, who gave him the puck on the right wing. After Nilsson sprawled to the ice, Jenner slid a pass to Letestu in the crease for a jam shot into an almost vacant net. His ninth goal ended a 22-game drought.
Late in the second period, Nilsson made a stop, and R.J. Umberger took a swing at the puck in the goalie’s grasp. That touched off some mayhem, with the teams pairing off to wrestle and fight. Islanders forward Matt Martin came across the ice to blindside Umberger, touching off the melee.
Seconds later, during another power play, the Blue Jackets made it 4-0. Cam Atkinson slid a pass to Murray for a one-timer in the high slot for his first goal since Nov. 25, a span of 38 games.
NOTES: Jenner’s 14 goals are the second most by a Blue Jackets rookie (Rick Nash, 17 in 2002-03). … Columbus ends its home schedule on Tuesday night against Phoenix. … D Scott Mayfield made his NHL debut for the Islanders. … Nilsson was facing the Blue Jackets for the first time.