COLUMBUS, Ohio — After the Columbus Blue Jackets' biggest offensive outburst of the season, forward Brandon Dubinsky was asked if he saw it coming.
"Something had to give, right?" he said.
Dubinsky had a goal and an assist and the Blue Jackets dominated against the NHL's stingiest defense in a 6-2 victory over the San Jose Sharks on Monday night.
James Wisniewski and Nikita Nikitin added goals, Cody Goloubef picked up his first NHL goal and Vinny Prospal and Mark Letestu tied a franchise record by scoring 8 seconds apart in the third period. Nick Foligno and Matt Calvert each had two assists.
No wonder San Jose coach Todd McLellan was fuming after the game when asked for a brief summation of went wrong.
"Outworked? How about that?" he said after his club's fifth straight defeat in the wake of a 7-0 start. "It's pretty simple. The team that works the hardest wins. (We were) outworked, outexecuted, outdetailed, outgoaltended — out-a lot of things."
The Sharks did not play like a team that flew into Columbus on Saturday and had only played one game in the last six days. The Blue Jackets, stuck in a three-game skid during which they couldn't buy a goal, had played four games in that same span and were in action at home for the second night in a row.
"We had every excuse tonight not to play well," coach Todd Richards said. "I liked that there were no excuses."
San Jose came in allowing an NHL-low 1.82 goals per game. Columbus was next-to-last in the 30-team league scoring just 1.92 goals a game.
Yet Columbus scored 43 seconds into the game, added two goals 1:11 apart in the second period and then scored three goals in the opening 5:45 of the final period.
"Right off the start, the first shift, they score a goal. You don't want to do that," San Jose captain Joe Thornton said of Dubinsky's first goal of the season. "But then we played some good hockey. You're down 3-1 and then they score again to start the third period. It was just one of those games you put behind, you get ready for tomorrow."
In one of the wildest periods of the season — the teams scored three goals in 84 seconds — the Blue Jackets expanded a 1-0 lead in the second.
They stacked up three power plays, including 36 seconds of 5 on 3. After that expired, they made it 2-0 with the man advantage when Derick Brassard skated along the goal line toward the cage, drawing goalie Thomas Greiss. But Brassard slid a quick pass to Wisniewski for a one-timer at the left hash to make it 2-0.
Just over a minute later, it was 3-0. Goloubef, playing in his fifth career NHL game, sat in the right point while Derek MacKenzie carried the puck along the back boards and slid the puck from the left corner across the ice to him. He steadied the puck and then rocketed a slap shot, with Foligno and Derek Dorsett providing traffic.