Five different players score in clubs sixth preseason game, and first game of a home back-to-back.
COLUMBUS, OHIO - OCTOBER 04: Elvis Merzlikins #90 of the Columbus Blue Jackets tends net during the third period against the Buffalo Sabres at Nationwide Arena on October 04, 2023 in Columbus, Ohio. (Photo by Jason Mowry/Getty Images)
COLUMBUS-- The Columbus Blue Jackets hosted the Buffalo Sabres Wednesday night.
With both rosters packed with NHL talent, the Jackets were able to squeak out a 5-3 win.
Patrik Laine, Johnny Gaudreau, and Kirill Marchenko each had a goal and an assist, while Adam Fantilli scored his first (preseason) NHL goal, and Emil Bemstrom got his third goal this preseason.
The Jackets saw a 3-0 lead evaporate yet again but were able to pull away midway through the third period.
LAINE PROJECT UPDATE
Patrik Laine completed yet another game down the middle in between Johnny Gaudreau and Kirill Marchenko. He looked a lot more like a regular NHL center.
Laine, Marchenko, and Gaudreau all scored, and they all tacked on an assist as well. This could be a line that we see come opening night.
Since the arrival of Adam Fantilli and the move to center by Laine, there has been an overflow of centers. Kent Johnson and Cole Sillinger both played on the wing tonight.
- Damon Severson and Ivan Provorov split top-line duties with Zach Werenski and Andrew Peeke. Coach Vincent liked what he saw out of both pairings, as he mentioned at the post-game press conference.
- Elvis looked good tonight, just a tad inconsistent at times. Merzlikins was visibly upset after Buffalo's Owen Power put a slow backhand behind him.
- The Jackets saw a lead quickly vanish for the third game in a row.
- Fantilli can work really well with just about anybody he is paired with, and I think he is moving around a bit better than he was at the start of camp.
The Jackets are back home tomorrow (Thursday) night. They take on the Washington Capitals at 7 P.M.
Ian Phillips (@ianphillips9) for Yamo Media