COLUMBUS, Ohio — With the normal opening night excitement palpable, the Boston Bruins overcame two, two-goal deficits to top the Columbus Blue Jackets 6-3 at Nationwide Arena on Thursday night.
Brad Marchand was the Bruins catalyst, dishing out three helpers in the second period before scoring two goals in the third to seal the victory.
Offseason addition David Backes added two goals and an assist and David Pastrnak had two goals and two assists for the Bruins.
Seth Jones had a goal and an assist and Alexander Wennberg and Cam Atkinson scored a goal each for the Blue Jackets.
The Blue Jackets scored just 2:58 into the first period when Wennberg carried the puck through the neutral zone before sniping the puck past Bruins’ goalie Tuukka Rask. Jones and rookie Zach Werenski got the assists.
Atkinson scored at 17:25 of first period off a snap feed from Nick Foligno across Boston’s goal-mouth for a 2-0 Blue Jackets advantage. Wennberg notched his second point of the night with the secondary assist.
Pastrnak scored at 2:36 of the second to halve Columbus’ lead after Jones whiffed on a clearing pass.
Jones restores Columbus’ two-goal lead at 7:44 of second, as he gets the puck through traffic and past Rask.
At 15:36, Backes tucked away a rebound from close-in after a towering defenseman Zdeno Chara’s point shot to get the Bruins back within one goal, 3-2.
Less than two minutes later, Backes got his second goal of the game after redirecting a shot from Pastrnak to tie the game at 3.
Marchand scored the go-ahead goal on a rebound from Blue Jackets goalie Sergei Bobrovsky at 9:54 of the third period, making it 4-3.
Marchand scored again to give the Bruins a 5-3 lead at 15:25 of the third period.
With Bobrovsky pulled for the extra Columbus skater, Pastrnak potted an empty-net goal to cap the scoring.
NOTES: Each team had four rookies playing in the game … Columbus D Zach Werenski and D Markus Nutivaara made their NHL debuts … Boston F Austin Czarnik, F Danton Heinen, D Brandon Carlo and D Rob O’Gara made their NHL debuts … Columbus D Cody Goloubef (oblique) is on injured reserve. RW David Clarkson (back), D Dillon Heatherington (wrist) and G Joonas Korpisalo (groin) were also out. … Boston C Patrice Bergeron (lower-body) and D Adam McQuaid (upper-body) are day-to-day, with D Kevan Miller (hand surgery) out six weeks. … Bergeron, Joe Morrow and Tim Schaller were scratched for Boston. … Dalton Prout, Lukas Sedlak and Scott Harrington were scratched for Columbus.