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Real NHL Fleury miscue leads to Columbus tying series

 Nick Foligno #71 of the Columbus Blue Jackets mobbed by team mates after game winner
Nick Foligno #71 of the Columbus Blue Jackets mobbed by team mates after game winner
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In the last minute of play, Pittsburgh net minder Marc Andre Fleury, after playing an excellent game that held the Pens in left his crease to play the puck only to have it wind up in front of the net and buried by an unchecked Brandon Dubinsky who tied the game with only 24 seconds left on the clock.

Fast forward to over time and a clearly shaken Fleury seemed to struggle on more than one of the four shots Columbus got off before he whiffed on a wrist shot released by Nick Foligno from just inside the blue line after Pittsburgh had been pressing in the Blue Jackets end. That wrist shot was really nothing more than one of those nothing shots coaches tell the players to put on net even if there is no real chance it will go in. Well, it went in.

After jumping out to a 3-0 lead by the mid-point of the first period it looked as though the Pens were in control but Columbus clawed back to out shoot Pittsburgh in the first getting on the board when Jenner deflected a shot past Fleury at 16:39 to narrow the Pens lead to two.

Things only deteriorated for the Penguins from then on as they were badly outplayed in the second half of the game and out shot 18-6 in the second period alone. Columbus out hit the Pens, owned the face off circle and their power play clicked at 33% going 2 for 6.

Pittsburgh managed one lonely shot in over time while Columbus looked like the hungrier team and were rewarded with the win. Fleury just can’t seem to shake his mental meltdowns despite seeking professional help in the off-season to try to get to the source of the issue come play off time. This was a demoralizing collapse that has to leave Pens fans shaking their collective heads in disbelief at no, not again.

Olympic gold medal winner for Canada, Sidney Crosby was held off the score sheet and has yet to score a goal in the series thus far. Some have speculated he may be suffering from an undisclosed injury as he is not playing his typical game.

Game five goes Saturday in Pittsburgh at 7:00 eastern. The only question is will Fleury be the starter after allowing Columbus back in the series that looked to be sewn up early on in game four.

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