For the third straight game in the Pittsburgh Penguins – Columbus Blue Jackets first round playoff series, the team having a 3-1 lead failed to hold on and ended up losing the game.
The Penguins fell behind this time by scores of 2-0 and 3-1 before scoring on 3 consecutive shots in a span of 2:13 in the third period and hung on to continue a trend.
The Blue Jackets took command early with Boone Jenner pouncing on a bad rebound from Marc-Andre Fleury and putting it though the Penguins’ goalie’s legs just 1:38 in. Jack Johnson double the lead, jumping in from the point and putting yet another poorly placed rebound over Fleury less than 2 minutes later. This forced the Penguins to call a timeout to settle the troops.
The Blue Jackets stemmed the tide and 4 straight Penguins power plays and it looked like they would get through 40 minutes with the 2 goal lead until Brooks Orpik made a spin-around desperation shot that somehow beat Sergei Bobrovsky with less than 2 seconds on the clock to get the Penguins back in the game.
Columbus restored the 2 goal cushion early in the third, with Brandon Dubinsky‘s shot going in off the arm of Cam Atkinson just over a minute into the final frame. Then, the Penguins quick strike offense went to work. First, Brandon Sutter tipped Paul Martin‘s shot past Bobrovsky, Lee Stempniak scored on a wrist shot on a rush, and finally Olli Maatta‘s shot from the point was tipped at the top of the faceoff circle by Jussi Jokinen before going in off the leg of Blue Jackets defenseman James Wisniewski for the game winner.
Game 4 goes Wednesday in Columbus.