COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) - It was a similar game - only with the Columbus Blue Jackets on the winning side - less than 48 hours later.
In a disappointing 5-2 loss at New Jersey on Thursday night, the Blue Jackets fell behind 3-0, giving up two early power-play tallies, and then allowed a short-handed goal in the final minute of the second period.
Fast forward to Saturday, when their power play clicked and Anisimov scored with his team a man down.
“When we go to the locker room … huge momentum for us,” Anisimov said of his goal with 10 seconds left in the period with the game tied at 3. “Every goal you score in the last minute is huge for the team.”
With the Panthers on the power play after Derek MacKenzie went off for a high stick, Anisimov created the goal with hard work. He skated from the left boards, behind the net and to the far wall to force a turnover by Jonathan Huberdeau.
The Russian Olympian then skated with the puck to the crease past defenseman Tom Gilbert, got goalie Scott Clemmensen to go for a fake with the backhand and then scored on the forehand.
“The Russian air was good for him,” joked Nick Foligno, who added one of two empty-net goals. “He’s come back flying. When you’re playing against elite players like that it gives you a ton of confidence.”
Columbus, which had lost its past three, couldn’t afford another effort as they had against the Devils. Anisimov’s goal charged up his teammates and the crowd.
“I didn’t realize it was such a great play until I saw the replays,” coach Todd Richards said. “That got the energy back for us.”
Foligno, playing in his 450th NHL game, collected his 200th career point on his goal. Matt Calvert added another empty-netter.
Sergei Bobrovsky wasn’t tested much, making 17 saves, but had a couple of big stops with the outcome still in doubt.
Shawn Mathias and Nick Bjugstad each had a goal and an assist and Sean Bergenheim also scored for the Panthers, who lost their fourth in a row and have dropped seven of eight.