Sergei Bobrovsky recorded his fourth shutout of the season with 30 saves as the Columbus Blue Jackets downed the road-weary San Jose Sharks, 4-0, at Nationwide Arena.
Marian Gaborik recorded a goal and an assist, while James Wisniewski, Matt Calvert and Ryan Johansen also lit the lamp in the victory.
The Blue Jackets had their 12-game point streak at Nationwide Arena come to an end Sunday against Minnesota, but recovered nicely to stay in playoff contention. They are currently two points behind the Red Wings for eighth place in the Western Conference standings.
"We realize we have to win some hockey games," Calvert said. "We're not out of the race yet."
The Sharks have also been a menace on their home ice, but fell to 6-11-2 away from HP Pavilion. They sit as the No. 5 seed in the West.
Antti Niemi was pulled in the third period after giving up four goals on 26 shots. The first goal the netminder allowed came at the 8:39 mark of the opening period, as he stuffed Cam Atkinson's wraparound attempt but couldn't get a glove on Calvert's chip-in.
Wisniewski extended Columbus' lead 3:09 into the second stanza when he one- timed Adrian Aucoin's pass and found the back of the net from the point.
Less than two minutes later, Gaborik drew two defenders into the right circle and passed to an open Johansen for a snap shot that lit the lamp at the 5:05 mark.
Gaborik's backhander ended Niemi's night with 12:44 remaining in regulation, sealing San Jose's second straight loss on the heels of its seven-game win streak.
"We looked kind of flat," Sharks defenseman Brad Stuart said. "We have to put it on ourselves to be ready and on top of our game when the puck drops."
Columbus improved to 10-0-0 when leading after two periods ... All four of Bobrovsky's career shutouts have come this season ... The Sharks are 14-1-5 at home ... Thomas Greiss relieved Niemi and made four saves ... The Blue Jackets finish their three-game homestand against the Blues on Friday ... San Jose stays on the road and plays at Detroit on Thursday.