Columbus at Chicago

Blue Jackets 5, Blackhawks 4

CBS wire reports

CHICAGO -- The Columbus Blue Jackets didn't panic after falling behind by two goals early in the game.

Rick Nash scored twice as Columbus rallied with five straight goals, and then held for a 5-4 victory over the Chicago Blackhawks on Saturday night.

Jaroslav Balastik, Manny Malhotra and Duvie Westcott also scored as the Blue Jackets went 3-for-8 on the power play and spoiled Chicago's home opener before a crowd of 17,133. Pascal Leclaire stopped 18 shots.

"A couple of years ago were could have gotten down by two goals, just gone home and kind of shut it down," Nash said. "But with our new team now, we're not getting down and just kind of keep on going. We were lucky enough that things turned our way."

Leclaire, who stopped 41 of 44 shots in a 3-2 overtime loss at home to Vancouver on Friday, said he and his teammates kept their focus against Chicago.

"We stuck to our game plan and it worked tonight," Leclaire said. "We played very solid. When you give up only about 20 shots, you're playing well defensively.

"It was a dirty, ugly win, but we found a way to get the two points."

Adrian Aucoin, Jeff Hamilton, Patrick Sharp and Martin Havlat scored for the Blackhawks.

Chicago's Nikolai Khabibulin had 19 saves, but has allowed 11 goals in his first two starts. The Blackhawks won 8-6 at Nashville on Thursday night.

Chicago coach Trent Yawney wasn't critical of his goalie, but ripped the rest of his team following the loss.

"He's going to see guys in his crease in his sleep," Yawney said. "It's very difficult to play disciplined hockey without self-disciplined people. Try it. It doesn't work."

After grabbing a 2-0 lead, the Blackhawks were sloppy for about the next 30 minutes, taking penalties and committing turnovers that helped enable Columbus' comeback.

"We deserved our fate," Havlat said.

Chicago was outshot 13-3 in the first period, but scored on its first two attempts.

Aucoin opened the scoring at 5:31 when Radim Vrbata's centering pass deflected in off Aucoin's skate. The goal withstood a video review. Hamilton then had a power-play goal through a screen from the right point at 7:16.

The Blue Jackets responded with two power-play goals late in the first to tie the score 2-all. Nash cut it to 2-1 with 5:01 remaining, knocking in a rebound from the left side of the net. Balastik tied it with 2:37 to go, converting a rebound of Anders Eriksson's shot from the point.

Malhotra made it 3-2 with 9:11 left in the second with Columbus' third straight power-play goal.

Following Duncan Keith's turnover, Nash took a pass from David Vyborny, broke in alone and beat Khabibulin 55 seconds later. Westcott made it 5-2 with 6:27 left in the period, banking in a shot off Khabibulin's pads from the side of the net.

Sharp's power-play goal with 4:19 left in the third cut Chicago's deficit it to 5-3. Havlat fired in a loose puck from the side of the net with 3:56 remaining to pull the Blackhawks within one.


Havlat has three goals and three assists in his first two games with the Blackhawks. ... Out with long-term injuries for Chicago are G Patrick Lalime (back surgery, three monnths), F Tuomo Ruutu (sprained knee, four weeks) and D Cam Barker (ankle surgery, four to six weeks) ... D Bryan Berard (back) and F Sergei Fedorov (shoulder, four to six weeks) are long-term injuries for Columbus. ... Blue Jackets D Rotislav Klesla served the second game of a two-game suspension for clipping Ruutu in an exhibition game at Columbus on Sept. 22. ... Hamilton's goal was his first with the Blackhawks and third of his career. Formerly in the New York Islanders' organization, Hamilton was signed by Chicago as a free agent on Sept. 29 after a strong training camp.

Copyright 2017 by STATS LLC and The Associated Press. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of STATS LLC and The Associated Press is strictly prohibited.
Columbus  (1-0-1) «2305
Chicago (1-1-0)2024
Three Stars
R. Nash

Goals: 2
Assist(s): 0
M. Havlat

Goals: 1
Assist(s): 1
J. Hamilton

Goals: 1
Assist(s): 1

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Scoring Summary
05:31Adrian Aucoin, Snap Shot - Assists: Radim Vrbata, Michal Handzus
07:16Power Play - Jeff Hamilton, Slap Shot - Assists: Michal Handzus, Martin Havlat
14:59Power Play - Rick Nash, Snap Shot - Assists: Ron Hainsey, David Vyborny
17:23Power Play - Jaroslav Balastik, Slap Shot - Assists: Anders Eriksson, Fredrik Modin
10:49Power Play - Manny Malhotra, Snap Shot - Assists: Dan Fritsche, Adam Foote
11:44Rick Nash, Snap Shot - Assist: David Vyborny
13:33Duvie Westcott, Slap Shot - Assists: Jason Chimera, Manny Malhotra
16:04Martin Havlat (3), Slap Shot - Assists: Lasse Kukkonen, Brent Seabrook
15:41Power Play - Patrick Sharp (2), Slap Shot - Assists: Michal Handzus, Jeff Hamilton
Penalty Summary
01:41Johnson: Tripping - 2 min.
06:37Fritsche: Interference - 2 min.
07:44Svitov: Holding - 2 min.
12:29Kukkonen: Holding - 2 min.
14:27Cullimore: Slashing - 2 min.
15:56Cullimore: Hooking - 2 min.
00:40Holmqvist: Roughing - 2 min.
06:19Cullimore: Holding - 2 min.
08:45Chimera: Interference - 2 min.
10:09Vrbata: Holding the stick - 2 min.
12:14Aucoin: Holding the stick - 2 min.
12:14Modin: Hooking - 2 min.
19:58Hamilton: Hooking - 2 min.
06:11Handzus: Interference - 2 min.
09:45Vyborny: Hooking - 2 min.
13:17Carter: Hooking - 2 min.
15:22Hainsey: Interference - 2 min.
18:31Havlat: Diving - 2 min.
18:31Modin: Interference - 2 min.
Columbus1392 24
Chicago3712 22
Pascal Leclaire59:35184
Nikolai Khabibulin58:17195
Attendance - 17133
Game Time - 60:00
Referees - Dennis LaRue, Chris Rooney
Line Judges - Andy McElman, Thor Nelson
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