Thursday night's game between the Columbus Blue Jackets and the Detroit Red Wings was one of the best, biggest, and most exciting hockey games that I have ever been to in my entire life. The crowd was roaring, the jeers were clever, and the beer was cold. Simply put, I have never seen Nationwide Arena jumping so much in my entire life; the crowd was so into it that for the first time ever (and the second, third, fourth ... 20th) they actually chanted in unison. The Blue Jackets needed a win and the fans came out to get it going and to show respect and honor to their hard working players.
Even though they lost, the Jackets fans gave the team a standing ovation which is exactly what they deserved.
The first period was a roughly equal fare, as both teams hit well and controlled well. Both Detroit and Columbus had a few power plays, and both were able to convert on them. The only area where Detroit dominated Columbus was in shots on goal, and of their shots they were able to convert more. The scoring kicked off when, in the second minute, Detroit's Nicklas Lidstrom scored on the power play. Not to be outdone, Kristian Huselius quickly scored back on Columbus' power play. This quick response was what the crowd needed, as it fired them up. For the rest of the period, Jackets fans were on their feet and cheering loudly. Though both Tomas Holmstrom and Daniel Cleary scored midway through the period for Detroit, the fans didn't really care.
Just like period one, both teams were roughly equal, and each converted on a power play. Rick Nash got his first playoff goal ever in the second minute. Columbus kept on scoring, and tied it up at three when R.J. Umberger scored his third goal in the fifth. But Detroit was not giving up and they quickly regained the lead when Marian Hossa scored twice within five minutes. Though this took the fans out of the game, they were not silent for long. With derisive chants of "Osgood Nogood" in his ears, Detroit's Chris Osgood let in two late period goals, as both Kris Russell and Fredrik Modin scored for the Jackets. For the third time of the night, Columbus had tied the game.