Pierre-Luc Dubois scored 18:24 into the first overtime period to complete his hat trick and give the Columbus Blue Jackets a stunning 4-3 comeback win in Game 3 of their Eastern Conference qualifying round series with the Toronto Maple Leafs on Thursday in Toronto.
The victory gives the Jackets a 2-1 lead in the best-of-five series. Game 4 takes place Friday night, giving both teams little time to recover from Thursday's extended action.
Down 3-0 just over halfway through the contest, a Blue Jackets offensive attack that had scored only two goals in the first two games suddenly sprung to life.
Dubois' overtime winner capped off his second career hat trick (regular season or overtime), in his first multi-goal performance in 19 career playoff games.
Seth Jones scored the Jackets' other goal, ringing a shot off the post and into Toronto's net 7:27 into the third period. Cam Atkinson had two assists for the Blue Jackets. He leads all Columbus skaters in the postseason with five points (one goal, four assists).
Elvis Merzlikins stopped 21 of 21 shots in relief of Columbus starting goaltender Joonas Korpisalo. After Leafs rookie forward Nick Robertson scored 8:48 into the second period, Korpisalo was pulled, having allowing three goals from 15 shots faced.
The change in net seemed to spark the Jackets, as Dubois scored his first goal less than three minutes after Merzlikins entered the game. With momentum again on Columbus' side, the Jackets came all the way back to tie the score on goals from Jones and Dubois during a lopsided third period, with the tying tally at the 10:49 mark.
Cody Ceci, William Nylander, and Robertson scored for the Maple Leafs. Kasperi Kapanen and Alexander Kerfoot each had two assists.
Toronto built its early lead on strong special-teams play. Ceci shorted a short-handed goal with 68 seconds left in the first period, and Nylander scored a power-play goal 7:08 into the second.
Robertson's goal was his first career NHL score. The 18-year-old forward made his league debut in Game 1 on Sunday.
Leafs goalie Frederik Andersen stopped 39 of 43 shots.
The Blue Jackets are looking to win the second postseason series in franchise history, after shocking Tampa Bay in a first-round sweep last season. The Leafs, meanwhile, haven't won a playoff series since 2004.
--Field Level Media