PENGUINS 4, BLUE JACKETS 2: Pascal Dupuis scored to snap a tie nearly six minutes into the third period and Brad Thiessen turned aside 22 shots in his NHL debut as Pittsburgh reclaimed sole possession of fourth place in the Eastern Conference.
All-Star Evgeni Malkin netted his fifth goal in three contests and defenseman Kris Letang and Joe Vitale also tallied for the Penguins, who have won 15 of their last 20 overall (15-4-1) and nine of 10 at Consol Energy Center.
Chris Kunitz's apparent goal was disallowed after it was determined he used a distinct kicking motion, but Pittsburgh regrouped and scored one minute later to snap a 1-1 tie.
The Penguins cycled the puck before Dupuis skated out to the right faceoff circle and fired a shot which squeezed just past Curtis Sanford and inside the right post. The goal was Dupuis' 15th of the season and second in as many games.
Letang provided insurance with a blast from the point nearly five minutes later and Thiessen held the fort to record his first NHL win.
After a scoreless first period, Columbus made Pittsburgh pay for a bad turnover in the neutral zone midway through the second. Defenseman Nikita Nikitin banked the puck off the boards to captain Rick Nash, who skated in and beat Thiessen low stick side for his 21st goal of the season and third goal in four games.
With R.J. Umberger in the penalty box for slashing, Malkin leveled the contest with 47 seconds left in the second period. James Neal wired a cross-ice pass to Malkin, who blasted a shot past Sanford.
GAME NOTEBOOK: Prior to being called up, Thiessen posted a 20-14-2 mark at Wilkes-Barre/Scranton of the American Hockey League. ... Nash netted his first shorthanded goal since he recorded back-to-back such tallies on Oct. 17 and 20, 2009. ... With his goal, Malkin extended his point streak to five games.