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NHL: Kent Johnson scores goal of the year, Blue Jackets give up last place

NHL: Kent Johnson scores goal of the year, Blue Jackets win tooth the last row


Young forward Kent Johnson of the Columbus Blue Jackets made many eyes widen Friday night.

In a 5-4 win over the New York Islanders at Nationwide Arena, the fifth-overall pick in the 2021 draft performed a superb maneuver between his legs to get rid of his cover, then netted a rare Michigan-like goal .

He had already scored goals this way in the British Columbia Hockey League and at the World Junior Hockey Championship.

Johnson, aged 20 years old, is in his first full campaign on the Bettman circuit. He amassed 15 goals and 37 points in 68 games.

His spectacular success allowed the Blue Jackets to take a 3-2 lead in the duel of the day. Eric Robinson then offered a cushion to the Ohio team by threading the needle, but the “Isles” had not said their last word.

Veterans Kyle Palmieri and Brock Nelson, with his second of the game, hit the target to force an extra period.

After 40 seconds of play in overtime, Boone Jenner however deflected a shot from Adam Boqvist to give the victory to his own, in massive attack.

Johnny Gaudreau and Liam Foudy completed the scoring for the Jackets. Zach Parise reached the 20-goal mark for the 11th time in his career, in a losing cause.

Thus, for the first time since February 26, the Blue Jackets no longer occupy the last place in the general classification. The San Jose Sharks are now the team with the best chance of getting their hands on Connor Bedard.

For their part, the Islanders still recorded an important point in the race for the playoffs. They hold a three-point lead over the Pittsburgh Penguins, but they have a game in hand.

The Devils will have to wait

At KeyBank Center, the New Jersey Devils could formalize their participation in the playoffs with a victory, but instead bowed out 5-4 against the Buffalo Sabres.

Lindy Ruff's men tried so hard What a pain to make a comeback in the third period, but Jack Hughes' double was not enough.

Alex Tuch gave the Devils defensive brigade a lot of trouble. He also shook the ropes twice and made himself an accomplice of Tage Thompson, who approached the coveted plateau by scoring his 44th goal of the campaign.

Dylan Cozens also blacked out the score sheet and helped the Sabers come within six points of the “Pens” and the last place giving access to the spring ball.

Yegor Sharangovich and Kevin Bahl had kept the “Devils” in the game finding the back of the net in the first twenty.

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