Matt Duchene among traded Senators making statement in playoffs
Columbus centre scored his 1st post-season goal on Friday night
The embers from the Ottawa Senators' fire sale are burning bright in these playoffs.
And it hasn't taken long for for those moved around the NHL's trade deadline to make an impact with their new teams.
On Friday night in Game 2 against the Tampa Bay Lightning, Columbus centre Matt Duchene scored his first post-season goal to help his team to a 5-1 victory.
He also had three assists — two in the first period and one in the third. With four points on the night, he's well on his way to matching his career total in playoff points (six assists in the nine games prior to Friday).
WATCH | Matt Duchene's big night:
With the Blue Jackets taking a 2-0 series lead over this year's Cup favourites, Duchene has come a long way since being traded by the bottom-dwelling Ottawa Senators ahead of this year's trade deadline.
It's been five years since he last played beyond the regular season and he's making the most of his team's unexpected early success after being left off the scoresheet in Game 1 on Wednesday.
Setting up the last goal, <a href="https://twitter.com/Matt9Duchene?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@Matt9Duchene</a> has set a <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/CBJ?src=hash&ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#CBJ</a> record for assists and points in a playoff game with 1-3-4.—@BlueJacketsPR
Prior to his playoff progress, the 28-year-old from Haliburton, Ont., had a somewhat modest four goals and 12 points in 23 games for the Blue Jackets.
So far, Columbus' all-in trade deadline gamble is paying off despite just squeaking into the final playoff spot in the East.
Ryan Dzingel, who was also traded to Columbus ahead of the deadline, hasn't made an immediate impact on the scoreboard, but arguably the biggest trade deadline prize Ottawa dealt is making waves in the West.
Mark Stone scored both of the Vegas Golden Knights' goals in a 5-2 loss to the San Jose Sharks on Wednesday night and was one of his team's only bright spots in an otherwise poor Game 1 showing. He followed that up with another goal in Vegas' 5-3 victory to even the series in Game 2 on Friday.
On the other side of the ice, beloved former Senators captain Erik Karlsson has collected four assists in two games. The 28-year-old defenceman showed no rust after only recently returning from a groin injury that saw him miss 17 games. Ottawa sent Karlsson to San Jose in an off-season swap for several picks and prospects.
After his departure, Ottawa's season was circling the drain fairly early on and it was clear well ahead of the trade deadline that changes were on the horizon. The Senators swiftly cleaned house at the trade deadline to the early benefit of Columbus and Vegas.