Their defining moment came when nobody expected it.

Five years is a long time to live off the past, though.

At least they showed a resiliency not often seen since their Stanley Cup win.

The Penguins seemed to call upon that past Monday night.

A 4-3 win over the Columbus Blue Jackets at Nationwide Arena staked the Penguins to a 2-1 lead in a best-of-seven Stanley Cup playoff series. They will try to move within a victory of advancing to Round 2 with a road win Wednesday night.

Two-goal leads haven't been safe in this series, and that continued in Game 3.

The Blue Jackets were ahead 2-1 when Penguins defenseman Brooks Orpik scored with 2 seconds remaining in the second period.

That goal initially looked to launch the Penguins, as did his last — and only other — playoff goal, an overtime clincher in Game 6 against the New York Islanders last postseason.

However, the Blue Jackets restored their two-goal advantage quickly — a minute and four seconds in — when the third period opened. Winger Cam Atkinson had a shot attempt by center Brandon Dubinsky deflect off him and past Penguins goalie Marc-Andre Fleury.

At that point, given that bounce and the lack of goal production from franchise centers Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin, it seemed likely the Penguins would face a dire situation in Game 4.

That situation would have been win to even the series, or lose and face two days of talk about a potential tumultuous offseason before an elimination Game 5.

However, something happened between Atkinson's goal and the Penguins' impending doom.

That something was the return of Blue Jackets goalie Sergei Bobrovsky's Game 1 form.

He had stopped 52 consecutive shots before Orpik's goal at the end of the second period. Bobrovsky closed Game 3 with 11 saves on his final 15 shots faced.