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(Friday, December 27th)
Final Score: Columbus 2, New Jersey 1 (SO)
Newark, NJ (SportsNetwork.com) - Cam Atkinson scored the only goal in the shootout to lift the Columbus Blue Jackets over the New Jersey Devils, 2-1, at Prudential Center.
Atkinson, Columbus' third shooter, skated in and slipped the puck through Martin Brodeur's legs to win the game. He also added an assist in his 100th career game.
"It seemed like he (Brodeur) was coming out pretty far, and while I can shoot, I like to deke," Atkinson said of his approach in the shootout. "I saw the opening and went five-hole and luckily it went in."
Artem Anisimov tallied the Blue Jackets' lone regulation goal and Curtis McElhinney turned aside 16-of-17 shots in Columbus' third straight win.
Adam Henrique lit the lamp in the third and Brodeur made 29 saves in New Jersey's third loss in four games.
"It's a big point," Brodeur said of his team salvaging a point. "But especially when you play teams that are close to you, it's even more important to win games."
Columbus opened the scoring 7:34 into the first. Atkinson threw a pass over to Brandon Dubinsky at the goalmouth, but Brodeur kicked aside Dubinsky's offering. Anisimov quickly gathered the puck and lifted the rebound over the sprawled goaltender.
After a scoreless second, New Jersey broke the tie in the third. Patrik Elias redirected a pass from Marek Zidlicky and Henrique flew in on net to wrist the puck past McElhinney 5:45 into the third.
The Devils had a great chance to end the contest in their favor with 2:49 remaining, but could not capitalize. Travis Zajac knocked a puck out of the air in the front of the net and rang a shot off the post.
Columbus has won all three meetings with New Jersey this season, and the two teams will meet for the final time on Feb. 27 ... New Jersey fell to 0-6 in shootouts this season ... Devils forward Ryane Clowe returned to the lineup for the first time since Oct. 13 after missing 32 games with a concussion ... New Jersey will travel to Uniondale to face the Islanders on Saturday, while Columbus hosts the Penguins on Sunday.
12/27 23:40:41 ET