It was a three strikes and out night for Elvis Merzlikins sadly, as Forsberg scored for the Predators, followed by a score by Trenin, and then another by Forsberg. All of this happened within the first 12 minutes of the game, while the second and third goals of the night, for the Predators, came within 9 seconds of one another. At this point Head Coach Brad Larson sent Merzlikins to the locker room, and Joonas Korpisalo came out in his place. For the remainder of Period 1, Korpisalo held strong against 5 shots on goal.
Sadly, this wouldn’t last. At 15:26 Forsberg would score a third, giving him a hat trick on the night. He wasn’t done though, as he’d find the goal, again, at 19:54. The second period would end with the Columbus Blue Jackets in a serious hole, as the Predators led them 5-0.
At 7:15, in the third period, the score would go up 6-0. Cousins would now score for the Predators, gaining his second goal of the 2021-22 NHL Season. I’m not going to lie, at this point it was just painful to watch, especially as a fan before I even started sports writing. Tonight wasn’t the fault of one specific player, tonight was a collective fail for the full Blue Jackets team. Our goaltenders weren’t on point, our defense wasn’t protecting them, and the offense couldn’t score. It was a rough night all around. Yes, it’s that simple. 12-8-0 is hard to swallow, as is the two road losses, back to back. However, it’s time to regroup and prepare, because there is no time to do anything else. The Columbus Blue Jackets now travel to Dallas to face the Stars on Thursday. It’s a later puck drop at 8:30 PM. The need to use this shutout against them as a way to grow and rebound. They simply have to, because we all know they are better than this tonight.