I’m not worried about the team…I’m not gonna buy into this youth stuff.
That’s some of what Columbus Blue Jackets Head Coach John Tortorella had to say after suffering a 3-1 loss to the Pittsburgh Penguins on Wednesday night.
From the Pens point of view, their Head Coach Mike Sullivan had this to say about the CBJ in the first 20 minutes of action:
They certainly controlled the game in the first period.
That they did, outshooting the Penguins 16-3, but were ultimately unable to take the lead, even with a power-play opportunity in the last five minutes of the opening period.
Brian Rust, Phil Kessel and Nick Bonino each scored a goal in the second period. Rust scored just 75 seconds into the period and Kessel made the score 2-0 with a filthy wrist shot into the top-right corner of the net on a power play.
Sullivan said this about Kessel afterwards:
He’s got one of the best wrist shots in the game.
Things got away from the Jackets in the second period. Center Brandon Dubinsky described what happened a little more in depth:
They got that first one and put us on our heels a little bit…Then they got some more momentum with their second…We lost momentum and, and weren’t able to get it back.
Matt Calvert was able to put Columbus on the board in the third period, but it was too little too late.
The Penguins deserve plenty of credit for what they did in Game 1. Their defense stepped up, blocking 22 shots and goaltender Marc-Andre Fleury rose to the occasion in net after an unexpected injury to Matt Murray before the game.
We have a comfort level with either guy in net
Sullivan said that about his club regarding who’s the starting goalie in a game.
As for the Jackets, the loss doesn’t make things any easier, but they know it’s only one game in a best-of-seven series.
Rookie defenseman Zach Werenski described the importance of some of the youngsters playing in their first playoff game:
I think just getting our feet wet in a Stanley Cup Playoff game is definitely gonna be huge going forward.
In case Columbus fans weren’t sure if the team feels confident or not moving forward, Nick Foligno put all that to rest with this soundbite:
We all I think can play a little better come game two and I think we will.
Friday night. That’s when we’ll watch the Columbus Blue Jackets and Pittsburgh Penguins go at it in Game 2.