Originally posted on Pro Sports Daily  |  Last updated 10/26/13
The Columbus Blue Jackets and their fans waited a long time for a second home win against the Toronto Maple Leafs. The wait proved worth it Friday, when the Blue Jackets scored four times in the third period for 5-2 victory. Brandon Dubinsky scored a 4-on-3 shorthanded goal to give the Blue Jackets a 3-1 lead, and he assisted on Ryan Johansen's empty-net goal with 27 seconds left after the Maple Leafs had pulled to within one. That was followed by a goal from Nick Foligno with seven seconds to go to cap a win more than 10 years in the making. Columbus is 4-6-1 all-time against Toronto and lost three of the previous four to the Maple Leafs at Nationwide Arena. The only win was 4-3 in overtime on March 20, 2003, Toronto's first visit to Columbus. Columbus (5-5-0) has won the first three of this four-game homestand. "We're back to .500, and now we have to start climbing the standings," Dubinsky said. "This is big for us." Blue Jackets rookie defenseman Ryan Murray scored his first NHL goal for a 1-0 lead in the first period, but Phil Kessel tied the score in the second to set up a wild third. "Toronto's a good team and they're playing well, but tonight we played a little better," Foligno said. "It says a lot about our team." Sergei Bobrovsky stopped 23 shots for the Blue Jackets; Jonathan Bernier had 31 saves for the Maple Leafs. Columbus won the battle between Toronto's No. 2 power play and the 26th-ranked Blue Jackets penalty-kill that had allowed at least one goal in five straight games. The Maple Leafs did not score in three attempts. "We stuck together," Dubinsky said. "We were aggressive when we needed to be. [Bobrovsky] came up with big saves when he needed to. We just found a way to kill them off." But the Maple Leafs (7-4-0) did make it 3-2 at 15:30 when Dave Bolland scored an even-strength goal off a rebound of a Paul Ranger shot. The Maple Leafs pressured for the equalizer, but the Blue Jackets responded. "It shows our resolve," Dubinsky said. "You can sit back in that situation and hope they don't score, or you can be proactive." July free-agent signee David Clarkson made his debut for the Maple Leafs on right wing after serving a 10-game suspension for coming off the bench to fight in the final preseason game against the Buffalo Sabres. Coach Randy Carlyle wasted no time putting the Toronto native on the ice, starting him alongside Dave Bolland and Jay McClement.
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