The Columbus Blue Jackets have finally won. After three weeks, and eight games, the Blue Jackets used a steady forecheck to jump on top of the Red Wings 2-1 after the first period and never looked back.
"I don't think anyone in that dressing room has been through the three weeks of hell we just went through," Columbus coach Scott Arniel said. "The psychological, the emotional, everything that came with it. It was a lot of baggage."
Sparked by the return of James Wisniewski who played his first game after being suspended for the first eight contests of the year, the Jackets scored just :21 into the game when R.J. Umberger scored his first goal of the season. Detroit tied the contest four minutes later, but Ryan Johansen answered with his first goal of the season at the 8:56 mark and the Jackets never looked back.
"I tried to bank it off his leg and it trickled in," said Johansen, the fourth overall pick in the 2010 draft. "It was a pretty good feeling."
Columbus had entered the game as the only winless club left in the NHL after starting 0-7-1, their worst start in franchise history. The key for the Blue Jackets was the first period in which they out-shot Detroit 14-6 and controlled the ice.
"We just got beat 7-1, so to start like that tonight to me is a lack of preparation and isn't good enough," Detroit coach Mike Babcock said. "You knew Columbus was going to play hard. You knew they were going to find a way to win a game so our urgency had to match theirs."
Jackets' goalie Steve Mason rallied back from an injury to make 30 saves for the win.
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