Blackhawks, Blue Jackets look to stave off elimination

Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

Right now, the Blue Jackets are desperate.

The defending Stanley Cup champions are hoping a better start will help them finish off Columbus.

After Tuesday night's 5-4 Blue Jacket win, Tortorella stopped to take some photos with fans.

Sergei Bobrovsky had 27 saves for the Blue Jackets, who get their first playoff win in three years.

"That's why we've won all year long, is everybody contributes by committee", Tortorella said.

But the Penguins power play was ineffective, and the Blue Jackets wound up with the best scoring chance: A William Karlsson shot that Fleury gloved.

The other two series Thursday night are much tighter with Edmonton-San Jose and Montreal-New York Rangers tied at two games apiece.

"It doesn't matter how well the goalie played, we have to get to him", Pavelski said.

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Patric Hornqvist, Ron Hainsey, Tom Kuhnhackl and Jake Guentzel scored goals for the Penguins.

"We just chose to keep them off the ice", Sullivan said.

"I wanted them - some guys with limited playoff experience, some of them with none - just to try to enjoy a win", Tortorella said.

"We've played good hockey, and it's unfortunate we've put ourselves in this situation", Blue Jackets captain Nick Foligno said Monday. Going into Game 5, the team's focus is getting back to playing well in all facets. "We just got to keep doing it". "I think in the case of (Tuesday), it wasn't our best game". The Penguins are not, but Crosby says they have to play like they are.

With a 3-9 career playoff record, Bobrovsky will need to do more in Game 5 to change that fortune, but at least now that's a possibility.

In Game 3, Columbus stormed to a 3-1 lead after one period.

Henrik Lundqvist made 23 saves and Rick Nash scored the deciding goal in the second period as NY defeated Montreal in Game 4 of their first-round series.

Through their first two playoff games, the Pittsburgh Penguins were clicking on all cylinders.

The Penguins answered to pull within one again at 2:10 of the third on Kuhnhackl's goal.

Jenner gave the Blue Jackets some breathing room again with a tip-in from in front of the goal on a shot from Brandon Saad that made it 5-3. But you know they're close games, and sometimes you get the bounces, sometimes you don't.

The Penguins now lead 3-1 in the best-of-seven series, which returns to Pittsburgh for Game 5 on Thursday night. Looking out West, they'll see three teams one loss away from elimination with some second-round match-ups already on the cusp of being set. Yes, Columbus coming back in the series isn't impossible, but a team recovering from a 3-0 deficit is something that has happened so rarely - four times in league history - that for the Blue Jackets to claw all the way back and punch their ticket to the second round seems improbable.

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