NHL Hockey

Final 1 2 3 Tot
Winnipeg 2 1 0 3
Columbus 1 2 1 4
4:30 PM PT5:30 PM MT6:30 PM CT7:30 PM ET0:30 GMT8:30 5:30 PM MST7:30 PM EST4:30 UAE (+1)19:30 ET22:30 BRT, January 22, 2020
Nationwide Arena, Columbus, Ohio  Attendance: 18,425

Jackets seek 6th straight win when Jets visit

Winnipeg Jets at Columbus Blue Jackets

  1. The Jets have won three straight meetings with the Blue Jackets, including a 4-3 victory in Winnipeg on November 23. All three Columbus goals came on the power play in that matchup, a season high for the Blue Jackets.
  2. Winnipeg fell, 4-1, in Carolina on Tuesday for its fifth loss in six games. The Jets managed just 17 shots on goal in the loss, their fewest since tallying 16 in a 3-1 loss to the Wild on November 23, 2016.
  3. Columbus beat the Rangers, 2-1, on Sunday and has outscored opponents 16-3 over its five-game win streak. It's only the second time in franchise history that the Blue Jackets have allowed three goals or fewer over a five-game span -- they also allowed three from October 25 to November 4, 2007.
  4. Patrik Laine scored the Jets' lone goal on Tuesday, his second straight game with a goal following a seven-game drought. Laine has 45 points this season, his most before the All-Star break in his four-year career, but his 17 goals this season are his fewest before the All-Star break.
  5. Oliver Bjorkstrand scored both Columbus goals in his return to action on Sunday, lighting the lamp twice in the third period to seal the win. Bjorkstrand has four game-winning goals this season, tied with Pierre-Luc Dubois for most on the team; he had just three game-winners over his last two seasons.
  6. Pierre-Luc Dubois tallied an assist in Sunday's win and leads the Jackets with 35 points (15g, 20a) this season -- tied for fourth fewest by a team scoring leader. The Jets have five players with at least 35 points this season.

The Columbus Blue Jackets have picked themselves up off the mat and answered the bell with a sterling stretch of hockey over the last 6 1/2 weeks.

The surging Blue Jackets bid for a season-high sixth straight win on Wednesday when they host the Winnipeg Jets.

Columbus, which previously won five in a row from Dec. 16-23, has collected at least a point in 19 of its last 21 games (15-2-4) since Dec. 9.

"Right now, we're trying to ride this wave as best we can," Blue Jackets coach John Tortorella said. "We'll have some struggles along the way again, but I just believe the team will handle itself the right way."

Columbus has outscored its foes by a 16-3 margin during its current win streak following Sunday's 2-1 victory over the New York Rangers. Matiss Kivlenieks recorded 31 saves in his NHL debut in place of fellow rookie Elvis Merzlikins, who received the league's Second Star of the Week honors the next day.

Merzlikins has flourished during his four-start winning streak, turning aside 134 of 136 shots while registering the first three shutouts of his career.

The Blue Jackets also benefited from the returns of two key cogs to ignite their offensive engine.

Cam Atkinson has five points (three goals, two assists) in three games since missing a dozen due to an ankle injury while Oliver Bjorkstrand tallied twice against the Rangers following a 13-game absence due to rib/oblique issue.

"Both players were playing well when they were injured," Tortorella said. "It doesn't surprise me. They give us a lift with the scoring. It's something that we need."

Bjorkstrand, who has seven goals and two assists in his last five games played, set up two tallies in Columbus' 4-3 setback to Winnipeg on Nov. 23.

The Jets won that game after Merzlikins' failed clearing attempt up the middle was knocked down by Andrew Copp, who scored with 1:54 remaining in the third period.

Winnipeg hasn't fared as well of late, having dropped five of its last six contests overall while being outscored 16-4 during its current three-game losing skid.

The first period in particular has been an issue for the Jets, who have been outscored 9-3 in the first 20-minute session of the last five games. That beat continued as Winnipeg allowed three first-period tallies in a 4-1 setback to Carolina on Tuesday.

"You're feeling your record in your last six right now, but they played hard and I've got no complaint with them," Jets coach Paul Maurice said. "I got no beef on the effort, the other team played well too."

Patrik Laine scored in his second straight game on Tuesday for Winnipeg, but the Jets failed to convert all four opportunities on the power play and fell to 1-for-16 with the man advantage over the last five games.

Laurent Brossoit is expected to get the nod in net as the Jets complete a back-to-back set. The 26-year-old sports a 1-1-0 record with a 3.87 goals-against average and .863 save percentage in four career appearances (three starts) versus Columbus.

--Field Level Media

Updated January 22, 2020

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