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NHL Preview: Columbus Blue Jackets (21-40-7) at Vegas Golden Knights (42-21-6)

COLUMBUS BLUE JACKETS NOTES:

Mar. 19, 2023 Game No. 69 (21-40-7, 49 pts.)
at Vegas Golden Knights (42-21-6, 90 pts.), T-Mobile Arena Road Game No. 34 (8-20-5, 21 pts.)
The Blue Jackets Press Box website, which includes game notes, stats, releases and video/audio clips as well as the 2022-23 Media Guide can be accessed at bluejackets.com/pressbox. Follow @BlueJacketsPR on Twitter for comprehensive information and updates on the team.

THE LAST GAME: MAR. 17, 2023 – CBJ 4 at ANA 7
CBJ Goal Scorers: Blankenburg (4), Jenner (23), PP – Sillinger (3), PP – Laine (22)
ANA Goal Scorers: Zegras (22), Harrington (2), Comtois (8), Terry (20), Jones (7), EN – Harrington (3), EN – Strome (12)
Goalies: CBJ – Hutchinson (31/36; 58:05); ANA – Dostal (38/42; 59:49)
CBJ PP: 2/4; PK: 2/2 | Shots: CBJ: 42 / ANA: 38
3 Stars: 1. Jones, ANA; 2. Terry, ANA; 3. Harrington, ANA
Noteworthy: CBJ went 0-2-0 in their season series vs. ANA (also falling 5-3 on Jan. 19)… CBJ and ANA were tied 2-2 after the 1st period and 3-3 after the 2nd period, but ANA scored 4 goals in the 3rd period, including 3 goals in the final 2:37 to win… Laine notched his 14th multi-point game of the season (1-1-2) and now has 6-7-13 in his past 10 outings… Gaudreau tallies his team-leading 46th assist, giving him 2-6-8 in his last 4 contests… Jenner scored his team-leading 23rd goal of the season and now has goals in 3 of his past 4 games (4-0-4)… Blankenburg scored a goal to give him points in 3 of the last 4 games (1-2-3).

OhioHEALTH INJURY REPORT
Danforth (torn labrum); Placed on Injured Reserve (Oct. 25); 6 months (62 games)
Werenski (torn labrum); Placed on Injured Reserve (retro to Nov. 10); rest of regular season (55 games)
Bean (shoulder); Placed on IR (retro to Nov. 15); out indefinitely (53 games)
Kuraly (left oblique strain); 6 weeks (7 games)
TOTAL MAN GAMES LOST: 446

RECENT TRANSACTIONS
Mar. 18 Assigned Pyyhtia from TPS (Liiga) to Cleveland (AHL)
Mar. 16 Signed Butler to a three-year entry level contract beginning in the 2023-24 season
Mar. 10 Added Tarasov to the roster on emergency recall from Cleveland (AHL)
Mar. 7 Signed Ceulemans to three-year, entry level contract beginning in the 2023-24 season

TODAY’S GAME BROADCAST INFO
4pm ET | Bally Sports Ohio | 97.1 The Fan

AGAINST THE GOLDEN KNIGHTS
2022-23 Series: 0-0-1 (0-0-0 at VGK)
2021-22 Series: 1-1-0 (0-1-0 at VGK)
All-Time Series: 5-3-1 (2-2-0 at VGK)
Last 10 (Overall | Road): 5-3-1 | 2-2-0
All-Time GF/GA: 26/22
All-Time SF/SA: 264/277
All-Time PP: 3-of-24
All-Time PK: 22-of-25

THE LAST GAME VS. VGK: NOV. 28, 2022 – CBJ 2 vs. VGK 3 (OT)(SO)
CBJ Goal Scorers: Gaudreau (8), Jenner (9)
VGK Goal Scorers: Karlsson (6), Carrier (8), SO – Cotter
Goalies: CBJ – Tarasov (34/36; 65:00); VGK – Thompson (26/28; 64:59)
CBJ PP: 0/2; PK: 4/4 | Shots: CBJ: 28 / VGK: 36
3 Stars: 1. Thompson, VGK; 2. Gaudreau, CBJ; 3. Cotter, VGK
Noteworthy: CBJ fell for 3rd-straight game (0-2-1)… It was the 1st overtime and shootout game in the all-time series… CBJ trailed 2-0 after the 1st period, but scored a goal in the 2nd and 3rd periods to tie the game… VGK won the shootout in the 7th round… Gaudreau notched his team-leading 6th multi-point game of the campaign (1-1-2)… Jenner scored his team-leading 9th goal of the season to give him 8-3-11 in the last 11 games… Nyquist recorded his 2nd multi-assist/point effort of the season (0-2-2)… Sillinger skated in his 100th career NHL game.

SEASON SERIES LEFT: Series is complete.

NOTED (Team Highlights vs. VGK)
The home team has collected points in 3-straight games of the series (2-0-1)… Winning team has recorded 3+ goals in 7 of the 9 games in the series (including SO) and 4+ in 4 of the outings… 5 of the last 7 games have been 1-goal contests… CBJ have killed off 21-of-22 VGK PP attempts since 3/6/18 (95.5 pct.)… CBJ own both shutouts in the series (Bobrovsky and Merzlikins) and lone hat trick (Sillinger on 3/13/22)… Most goals scored at VGK: 4 (2/9/19)… Most goals allowed at VGK: 6 (1/23/18).

NOTED (Player Highlights vs. VGK)
Boqvist notched 1st career NHL assist on 12/10/19 at VGK… Kuraly scored 1st career NHL goal (reg season) on 11/2/17 vs. VGK and played in 100th career NHL game on 11/11/18 vs. VGK… Merzlikins notched 1st career NHL shutout on 1/11/20 at VGK and played in his 100th career game on 3/13/22 vs. VGK… Sillinger skated in his 100th career NHL game on 11/28/22 vs. VGK and notched his 1st career hat trick on 3/13/22 vs. VGK… Werenski notched 1st ever CBJ GWG vs. VGK on 3/6/18 and 200th career NHL point (1st assist) on 11/20/21 at VGK.

SCORING NOTABLES vs. VGK
• Gaudreau – 5-7-12 in 15 career GP, including 2-2-4 in his last 4 games after collecting points on both of the Blue Jackets’ goals on Nov. 28 (1-1-2)
• Laine – 6-4-10 in 9 career GP, including points in each of his last 3 games against the club (2-2-4) and 3-1-4 in 4 career games at TMobile Arena
• Sillinger – 3-0-3 in 3 career GP, notching the 1st hat trick of his career and 1st by a Blue Jacket vs. Vegas in the all-time series on Mar.
13, 2022.

PLAY OF LATE
The Blue Jackets fell to 5-6-3 in their last 14 games following a 7-4 loss at Anaheim on Friday. The club has registered points in nine of its last 16 games (6-7-3), with wins against four of the top-14 teams in the League in points (Toronto-4th; Dallas-9th; Edmonton-12th; Winnipeg-14th). The club has collected points in 10 of its last 16 contests away from Nationwide Arena dating back to January 23 (6-6-4).

HIT THE ROAD, JACK(ETS)
After playing a schedule heavy in-home games, the Blue Jackets keep their travel bags packed over the month of March. The club is in the middle of a stretch of 12-of-15 games away from Nationwide Arena from February 26 through the end of March. The Blue Jackets play the fourth game of a season-long five-game road trip on Sunday at Vegas. The team kicked off the trip with its annual California trip (San Jose, Los Angeles and Anaheim) last week and ends the trip in Washington on Tuesday. The club plays the five games over an eight-day stretch.. Columbus plays five games over an eight day stretch on the road trip. The lone home games this month are March 3 (vs. Seattle), March 11 (vs. St. Louis) and March 24 (vs. NY Islanders).

POWERING UP
CBJ finished 2-for-4 on the power play on Friday and have recorded a power play goal in seven of the last eight games (8-for-21; 38.1 pct.). The stretch included a PPG in six-straight games from February 28-March 14. It was tied for the third-longest streak of games with a PPG in club history (fifth time). The club has scored a PPG in 11 of the last 15 contests (12-of-40; 30.0). The team ranks fourth-T in the NHL in power play percentage since January 21, converting on 17-of-62 opportunities over the last 23 games (27.4). After starting the season 0-of-25 with the man advantage, Columbus ranks 13th-T in the NHL on the power play at 21.8 pct. (34-of-156) since Nov. 4.

VEGAS GOLDEN KNIGHTS NOTES:

GOLDEN KNIGHTS UPCOMING GAMES
Golden Knights 2022-23 Record: 42-21-6, 90 points (21-14-1 at Home, 21-7-5 on Road)

DATE OPPONENT TIME (PT) TELEVISION RADIO SPANISH RADIO
Mar. 19 vs. Columbus Blue Jackets 1 p.m. AT&T SportsNet Fox Sports 98.9 FM/1340 AM Deportes 1460 AM
Mar. 21 at Vancouver Canucks 7 p.m. AT&T SportsNet Fox Sports 98.9 FM/1340 AM None
Mar. 23 at Calgary Flames 6 p.m. AT&T SportsNet Fox Sports 98.9 FM/1340 AM None
Mar. 25 at Edmonton Oilers 8 p.m. AT&T SportsNet Fox Sports 98.9 FM/1340 AM None
Mar. 28 vs. Edmonton Oilers 7 p.m. ESPN+ Fox Sports 98.9 FM/1340 AM Deportes 1460 AM

GOLDEN KNIGHTS LAST GAME RECAP
March 16 – Vegas Golden Knights 2, Calgary Flames 7
The Vegas Golden Knights (42-21-6) were bested by the Calgary Flames (31-24-14), 7-2, on Thursday night at T-Mobile Arena. Late in the first period, MacKenzie Weegar notched the game’s first goal to give Calgary a 1-0 lead. After Tyler Toffoli extended the lead to 2-0, Zach Whitecloud and Reilly Smith each found the back of the net to bring the game to even at 2-2. Calgary found another gear late in the game and scored five unanswered goals to pick up the 7-2 win.

LAST GAME BY THE NUMBERS

  • Smith’s goal and assist gives the forward nine points in seven games (3-6—9) for his longest point streak of the season
  • Whitecloud’s goal is the defenseman’s second of the season
  • Vegas’ loss to Calgary was the first time in series history that the Flames defeated the Golden Knights at T-Mobile Arena

Heating Up
After recording just 12 points in 20 games (2-10—12), Reilly Smith has a seven-game point streak for his longest streak of the season and matches his career high. After overcoming a 14-game goal drought, Smith has four goals in his last nine games and nine points (3-5—8) during his six-game point streak. Smith’s goal and assist marked his 11th multi-point game of the season against Calgary (1-1—2) and his 63rd as a Golden Knight, only Jonathan Marchessault (78) and William Karlsson (69) have more.

Beasts of the East
For the first time in franchise history, the Golden Knights have reached 20 wins against the Eastern Conference. Vegas’ upcoming contest at home against Columbus on Sunday will wrap up the club’s Eastern Conference competition for the remainder of the regular season. The Golden Knights currently own a 21-8-2 record against the Eastern Conference (14-4-0 Atlantic, 9-4-2 Metropolitan).Second Half Success Vegas’ remains in first place in the NHL standings in points percentage and in total points since the All-Star Break. In 18 games, the Golden Knights boast a 13-3-2 record, and have earned 28 out of the 36 possible points during the stretch. Their 6-1-2 February was just the third month in team history with only one regulation loss (also Jan. 2021, 5-1-1, and Dec. 2017, 11-1-1).

Most Points Since Feb. 6
28 – Vegas (13-3-2), Minnesota (12-4-4)
27 – Colorado Avalanche (12-4-3), New Jersey Devils (12-4-3)
26 – Los Angeles (12-2-2), NY Rangers (12-5-2)

The Goalie Carousel
Since the All-Star Break, the Golden Knights have seen a franchise-high of five different goaltenders start for the club. Vegas’ five netminders boast a record of 13-3-2 during the stretch and have combined for a .927 save percentage and 2.33 goals against average.

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