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Rookie Bjorkstrand leads Blue Jackets past Devils 6-3

COLUMBUS, Ohio -- The Columbus Blue Jackets trail the New Jersey Devils in the standings by nine points. It hasn't looked that way when the teams have shared the same rink, though.

Rookie Oliver Bjorkstrand got his first two NHL goals in the third period and the Blue Jackets beat the Devils 6-3 on Saturday night to move to 4-0-0 in the season series.

The Jackets are also 5-0-1 in the past six meetings. The teams play for the final time this season on Sunday at the Prudential Center.

"The good thing about hockey is you play a lot of games," New Jersey right wing Kyle Palmieri said. "We're fortunate we have them (Sunday) in our own building. It's time to get some redemption and salvage something from the series this season."

Columbus also got a goal and an assist from Boone Jenner and goals from Cam Atkinson, Seth Jones and William Karlsson. Alexander Wennberg and Matt Calvert each had two assists and Sergei Bobrovsky made 27 saves.

Palmieri had two goals and an assist for the Devils, who have lost two straight.

Keith Kinkaid made 16 saves before being replaced by Yann Danis 2:50 into the second period after allowing a third goal. Danis made 12 saves.

Losing so many times to Columbus has put a crimp in the Devils' fading postseason hopes, but that's not on the mind of New Jersey coach John Hynes.

"It's more the challenge of trying to beat them that's the focus right now," he said. "I don't necessarily believe in bad matchups. We have to do a better job collectively to beat them."

New Jersey had a chance even though they trailed 3-0 in the second period.

The Devils rallied to make it 3-2 after two periods before Palmieri, Bjorkstrand and Karlsson all scored within a 45 second span early in the third period.

Palmieri's second of the game and 27th of the season at 49 seconds tied the score at 3.

Bjorkstrand made it 4-3 at 1:23 after taking a pass in the slot from Wennberg for his first goal.

"It was a special goal, you're first NHL goal," Bjorkstrand said. "It bounced in to the slot. I happened to be in the right spot. It went in."

Columbus coach John Tortorella knew it was a matter of time before Bjorkstrand scored.

"You could almost sense it, even early in the game," he said. "The puck was following him around."

Bjorkstrand, a third-round pick (89th overall) in the 2013 NHL Draft, made his debut against the Detroit Red Wings on Thursday.

"The second game I knew what I came into. I was more comfortable," Bjorkstrand said.

Karlsson scored 11 seconds later to put Columbus ahead 5-3 and Bjorkstrand scored again at 6:38.

"They definitely responded. I needed to make a big save to keep it close," Danis said. "The big thing is they always have three guys going to the crease and they throw the puck at the net. They battled hard. They did battle for the loose pucks and the rebounds."

Jenner put Columbus up 3-0 at 2:50 of the second with his 25th goal.

New Jersey then got power-play goals by Palmieri at 5:42 and Adam Henrique at 8:57. Each has 26 goals to lead the team.

Columbus took a 2-0 lead after one period when Atkinson scored his 25th goal, on the power play, at 11:33 and Jones got his third at 14:56.

Game notes
Tortorella became the 26th coach in NHL history -- the first American-born -- to reach 1,000 career games. ... The Blue Jackets recalled on an emergency basis rookie goaltender Joonas Korpisalo from Lake Erie of the American Hockey League because backup Curtis McElhinney sustained a knee injury in practice on Friday. McElhinney will undergo season-ending surgery on Monday. ... Devils defenseman David Schlemko did not play because of an upper-body injury and defenseman David Warsofsky was a healthy scratch. ... Blue Jackets defenseman Fedor Tyutin played after missing a game because of illness. It was his 800th NHL game.