Blue Jackets 2, Avalanche 1, OT

The Sports Xchange
The SportsXchange

COLUMBUS, Ohio -- Artem Anisimov has had trouble staying healthy this season for the Blue Jackets. Sunday, after leaving the game early with a lower leg injury, he returned to finish.
Oh, did he finish.
Anisimov's goal at 2:26 of overtime sent the Columbus Blue Jackets to a 2-1 overtime win over Colorado at Nationwide Arena.
Vinny Prospal also scored for the Blue Jackets, his club-high eighth of the season, while goaltender Sergei Bobrovsky had 18 saves for only his second win since Jan. 28
Anisimov, who left the game in the first period when he was struck in the leg by a Ryan O'Reilly shot, was stationed low in the right circle as the Blue Jackets surrounded the goal with a 4-on-3 advantage.
Anisimov snapped off a wrist shot that eluded Avs goaltender Semyon Varlamov.
P.A. Parenteau scored Colorado's only goal, while Varlamov had 32 saves.
The game marked O'Reilly's return to the Avalanche lineup after a prolonged and messy contract dispute. It didn't even end well, really. Unable to reach a deal with Colorado, O'Reilly -- a restricted free agent -- signed an offer sheet with the Calgary Flames, one of Colorado's rivals in the Northwest Division.
The Avs had a week to match the Flames' offer, but decided to match it only hours later.
O'Reilly passed a physical on Friday, practiced for the first time on Saturday and made his debut Sunday. He played 15:10 and won only 9 of 23 faceoffs.
The game was locked at 0-0 until Parenteau scored on an odd play at 12:35 of the second period.
From atop the right faceoff circle, Parenteau floated the puck toward the net as if he was dumping it in the zone to forecheck. Colorado's Matt Duchene tried to redirect the puck with his stick above his head, but whiffed. Instead, it bounced off Bobrovsky's shoulder and fell behind him into the net.
The play was reviewed by the NHL video review in Toronto and was allowed to stand. Replays showed Duchene did not touch the puck; otherwise the goal would have been disallowed for being redirected by a highstick.
The Blue Jackets tied the game 1-1 early in the third, scoring a 5-on-3 goal with a little help from O'Reilly.
Prospal guided the puck into a crowd in front of Varlamov, then watched as the puck caromed off the extended left skate of O'Reilly and shot behind Varlamov.
NOTES O'Reilly, who led the Avs with 55 points last season, opened up on a line with center John Mitchell and Milan Hejduk. .. The Blue Jackets have dressed 11 different defensemen in only 22 games, all because of injuries. Nikita Nikitin was injured in the second period following a hit from Colorado's Patrick Bordeleau and did not return. ... John Moore suffered an unspecified upper body injury in a morning skate on Friday in Chicago. He'll miss at least a week, Richards said.

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