Foligno fires for Blue Jackets, Maple Leafs enjoy win
Columbus Blue Jackets captain Nick Foligno has not had a whole lot to shout about this NHL season, so he enjoyed his side's 6-1 win over the New Jersey Devils more than most.
The fact he scored a hat-trick only added to the sense of occasion, as the Blue Jackets continued to turnaround their season after a poor start.
The win was their 25th of the season, and Foligno got the home side off to the best possible start with two goals in the opening 10 minutes.
He scored his third in the second period, with Brandon Saad and Brandon Dubinsky scoring either side of the hat-trick sealer before Rene Bourque finished off the Devils in the final period.
Reid Boucher scored the consolation for the Devils.
Elsewhere, the Toronto Maple Leafs picked up an unlikely win of their own as goals from Brad Boyes, Josh Leivo and Pierre-Alexandre Parenteau did the damage in a 3-1 win over the Carolina Hurricanes.
The Florida Panthers picked up a 35th win of the season as they edged the Arizona Coyotes 3-2 thanks to a Aleksander Barkov double, the second of which proved the eventual winner as he put the Panthers two goals up, before Oliver Ekman-Larsson scored a late consolation for the visitors.
The New York Rangers moved to 35-20-6 thanks to Chris Kreider's 12th goal of the season, which proved the winner in a 2-1 triumph over the St. Louis Blues, while the reigning Stanley Cup champions the Chicago Blackhawks could not keep up with the visiting Nashville Predators who scored a 3-1 win.
The Winnipeg Jets were in fine form as they smashed the Dallas Stars 6-3, while the New York Islanders needed overtime to get the win over the Calgary Flames, with Josh Bailey scoring the winner.
Elsewhere, the Vancouver Canucks battled from behind thanks to doubles from Emerson Etem and Matt Bartkowski in a 5-3 triumph over the Ottawa Senators, while the Los Angeles Kings scored twice in the third period to complete a 2-1 win over the Edmonton Oilers.