Blue Jackets back in action tonight hosting the NHL’s oldest franchise in Montreal Canadiens, 7 PM

By Carey Van Lue

Canadiens to Watch

«  RW Cole Caufield, who has notched 23-plus goals in each of the last two campaigns, is tied for the team lead in goals, assists and points with 6-11-17 in 21 outings in 2023-24.

«  D Mike Matheson ranks fifth-T among NHL blueliners in goal and leads team defensemen with 5-10-15 in 21 outings.

«  C Nick Suzuki has recorded two consecutive 20-goal, 40-assist and 60-point seasons, and is tied for the club lead with 6-11-17 in 21 appearances in 2023-24.


All-Time Series

«  Columbus has gone 20-14-5 in 39 all-time meetings vs. Montreal, including 10-6-1 at home.

«  Montreal has won the last three contests in the series (CBJ; 0-2-1) following a six-game Blue Jackets win streak from Nov. 19, 2019-Nov. 17, 2022 and eight-game points streak from Mar. 28-2019-Nov. 17, 2022 (6-0-2).

«  CBJ have won eight of the past 10 contests played at Nationwide Arena, outscoring the Canadiens 46-21 since Jan. 25, 2016.

«  The winning team has scored four or more goals in seven of the last nine games of the series.

«  The winning team has won by multiple goals in each of the past seven contests played at Nationwide Arena and 10 of the last 11 dating back to Feb. 26, 2015.

«  The teams have combined for seven or more goals in three of the past four meetings.

«  The Blue Jackets own four of the five shutouts in the all-time series but the Canadiens earned the most recent one with Carey Price turning aside all 26 shots in a 1-0 OT win at Montreal on Feb. 28, 2017.

«  Each team has recorded a hat trick in the series with Cam Atkinson netting three in a 5-2 CBJ win at Columbus on Jan. 25, 2016 and Rafael Harvey-Pinard recording the feat in a 8-2 Canadiens home win on Mar. 25, 2023.

This Season (CBJ, 0-0-1)

«  Oct. 26, 2023 – at Montreal 3, Columbus 4 (OT)

«  Nov. 29, 2023 – at COLUMBUS (7 p.m. ET)

«  Mar. 12, 2024 – at Montreal (7 p.m. ET)

Player Notables vs. Canadiens

«  C Johnny Gaudreau – 6-17-23 in 27 career GP, including 3-5-8 in his past 10 appearances against Montreal and five of his last six home contests (3-3-6).

«  C Boone Jenner – 6-7-13 in 23 career GP, including 2-1-3 in his past three home outings against the club.

«  C Sean Kuraly – 3-5-8 in 18 career GP, including 2-2-4 in his last three home contests vs the Canadiens.

«  G Elvis Merzlikins – 3-1-2 and 2.95 GAA in 6 career GP, stopping 20-of-21 shots (.952 SV%) in a 5-1 win in his lone career home game against Montreal on Apr. 13, 2022.

«  RW Mathieu Olivier– 2-0-2 in 4 career GP, including goals in both career home contests (Nov. 17 and Nov. 22, 2022).

«  C Cole Sillinger – 3-2-5 in 6 career GP, including 2-1-3 in three career home appearances.



  • The Blue Jackets won for the third time in the past four games after earning a 5-2 win over the Atlantic Division-leading Bruins on Monday.
  • CBJ have played 11 one-goal games this season, including in eight of the last 13.  Another four contests have been two goal finishes thanks to the addition of empty net goals (Oct. 12 vs. PHI, Oct. 20 vs. CGY, Nov. 2 vs. TBL and Nov. 14 vs. PIT).
  • Sunday’s game at Carolina kicked off a stretch of nine games – with six played at home – in 15 days through Dec. 10.
  • Monday’s contest against the Bruins began a stretch of four-straight against Atlantic Division opponents, with another game against Boston (Dec. 3) and one each against Montreal (Nov. 29) and Ottawa (Dec. 1).
  • The club denied Boston on both of its power play chances and has now killed off all 10 opponent power play chances over the last four contests.  Columbus has also allowed power play goals in just two of the past 16 games (Nov. 16. vs. ARI) and (Nov. 19. vs. PHI), killing off 38-of-40 opponent power play chances (95.0 pct.).
  • CBJ rank second in the NHL in penalty kill percentage this season at 89.2 pct. (58-of-65) and lead the League in penalty kill percentage since Oct. 20 (92.6 pct.), killing off 50-of-54 opponent power play chances over the last 20 games.
  • The Blue Jackets rank second-T in the NHL with 26 first period goals and fifth-T in first period goal differential (+7).
  • Columbus has combined for 230 blocked shots over the past 12 games since Nov. 6 and ranks second in the NHL in blocked shots (439) and third in blocked shots-per-60 minutes (18.66).
  • Blue Jackets blueliners have combined for 5-14-19 over the past seven contests and rank third-T among NHL defensive units in assists and fifth in points with 10-46-56 in 23 games this season.  The club leads the League in assists (41.1 pct.) and points percentage (31.3 pct.) recorded by its defense.
  • CBJ’s rookie class has posted 9-15-24 in 23 games this season, ranking third among teams’ rookies in goals, assists and points, trailing only Chicago (13-17-30) and Anaheim (7-19-26).  Columbus is the only team in the NHL to have two rookies with 10 or more points in 2023-24 (Fantilli & Voronkov, 10).
  • The Blue Jackets, who downed the Blackhawks 7-3 last Wednesday, play their second of five Wednesday games when they host the Canadiens.


  • RW Yegor Chinakhov notched his seventh career multi-point outing with 1-1-2 on Monday and has collected 1-2-3 in the past four contests.
  • RW Justin Danforth, who ranks third on the club in goals (6), has collected 3-2-5 in his last nine games after scoring on Monday.
  • 2023 third overall pick C Adam Fantilli ranks sixth-T among League rookies in goals and seventh-T in points and eighth-T in assists with 4-6-10 in 23 appearances.  At 19-years and 41 days he became the third-youngest player in franchise history at the time of his 10th career NHL point last Wednesday vs. Chicago, behind only Rick Nash (18 years, 202 days) and Cole Sillinger (18 years, 301 days).
  • LW Johnny Gaudreau has collected points in four of his last six games (2-3-5), including an assist in his 100th career game with the Blue Jackets on Nov. 22 vs. Chicago.  His 59 assists and 82 points are the third-most among all players through the benchmark contest with the franchise behind Artemi Panarin (32-71-103) and Ray Whitney (32-64-96).
  • Erik Gudbranson, who has posted points in two of the past four games (1-1-2), has registered 2-7-9 in 23 contests.  He leads the team and ranks fourth-T in the NHL in blocked shots this season (60).
  • Boone Jenner picked up his team-leading fourth multi-point outing of the season and 72nd of his career with two assists on Monday.  He has registered points in five of his last six games (4-3-7) and leads the team in goals and points with 11-5-16 in 23 outings.  He has posted the third-most multi-point contests in franchise history, trailing only Rick Nash (137) and Cam Atkinson (81).
  • Sean Kuraly, who collected an assist on Monday, has recorded 3-4-7 in the past 12 outings.
  • RW Kirill Marchenko has recorded goals in two-straight and three of the past four games (2-1-3) after a goal on Monday.  He ranks second on the club in goals (7) and has totaled 7-3-10 in his past 14 appearances.  With 7-6-13 in 21 contests this season, he has already set a new career high in assists after posting 21-4-24 in 59 contests during his 2022-23 rookie campaign.
  • Elvis Merzlikins stopped a season-high 40 shots in Sunday’s game at Carolina.  The netminder, who has recorded six efforts of 30 or more saves this season, is 2-1-0 with a 2.35 goals-against average and .940 save percentage (110-of-117) in the last three games.
  • Ivan Provorov notched his second goal of the campaign on Monday and ranks second on the team in assists and time on ice and third in points with 2-12-14 on 23:23 TOI in 23 contests.
  • Alexandre Texier has recorded 4-3-7 in his past 10 appearances.
  • LW Dmitri Voronkov scored the first goal of the game on Monday to reach the 10-point mark (4-6-10 in 17 GP).  He required the third-fewest games among all rookies in CBJ history to record 10 NHL points, trailing only Zach Werenski (9 GP in 2016-17) and Jakub Voracek (13 GP in 2008-09).  His eight points since Nov. 1 (3-5-8) are the third-most among League rookies and trail only Chicago’s Connor Bedard (6-5-11 in 10 GP) and Calgary’s Connor Zary (3-6-9 in 11 GP).
  • Zach Werenski leads the club in assists and time on ice and ranks second in points with 1-14-15 and 23:25 TOI in 21 contests.  He has collected 10 assists in 14 November games, tying Seth Jones (Feb. 2021), James Wisniewski (Jan. 2014), Ryan Murray (Jan. 2014) and Ron Hainsey (Dec. 2006) for the most assists by a defenseman in a single month in Blue Jackets history.
  • CBJ have three rookies on the team with 19-year-olds C Adam Fantilli (2023 third overall pick) and D David Jiricek (2022 sixth round pick) as well as 23-year-old F Dmitri Voronkov (2019 fourth round pick, 114th overall).



  • LW Johnny Gaudreau is six points from 700 for his NHL career (234-460-694, 705 GP).
  • Andrew Peeke is one game away from his 200th NHL game (9-26-35, 199 GP).


  • Daniil Tarasov (knee) is on the Injured/Non Roster List on Oct. 9 (Week-to-Week); 23 games
  • Jack Roslovic (fractured ankle) is on Injured Reserve on Nov. 13 (4-to-6 Weeks); 8 games
  • Damon Severson (oblique) injured on Nov. 19 (Approx. 6 Weeks); 4 games