Columbus defeated the Penguins, 5-2, at Nationwide Arena tonight, stretching their preseason winless streak to 0-3-1.
The Penguins played most of the evening without center Sidney Crosby, who adjourned to the locker room 5 1/2 minutes into the opening period.
He did not return, although team officials said the decision to keep him out of the game was precautionary.
Crosby took just three shifts for a total of one minute, 37 seconds before leaving.
Michael Blunden gave Columbus a 1-0 lead when he threw a shot past goalie Marc-Andre Fleury just 62 seconds after the opening faceoff, but Evgeni Malkin countered for the Penguins on a shot from the slot at 6:27.
Malkin's goal, his third of the preseason, netted an assist for Tyler Kennedy (above).
Derrick Brassard put Columbus back in front to stay, 2-1, when he stuck a shot under the crossbar from in front at 12:38 of the second and Rick Nash buried a shot from inside the right circle during a power play at 14:07.
Nate Guenin, who looks like the favorite to claim a job as the No. 7 defenseman if the Penguins carry more than six, sliced the Blue Jackets' advantage to 3-2 at 18:45, as he snapped a 35-foot wrist shot past Columbus goalie Steve Mason from the slot.
But Derek MacKenzie restored Columbus' two-goal cushion when he backhanded in a loose puc k from the right side during a scrum at 10:05 of the third and Jakub Voracek punctuated the Blue Jackets' victory with a shorthanded goal at 17:13.
The Penguins, 1-3-1 in the preseason, will play their exhibition finale Sunday at 5:08 p.m.
Check out these penalties:
-The Penguins apparently were wearing orange PennDot road worker vests tonight.
(Photo: Jay LaPrete/Associated Press)