It didn’t take long for Patrik Laine to show the hockey world why he was drafted second overall by the Winnipeg Jets in this past summer’s entry draft. The 18 year-old rookie sensation from Finland has quickly shown his offensive prowess with his lethal shot and have Jets fans excited for the team’s future with Laine leading the way.
In a battle of the first and second overall 2016 draft picks, Patrik Laine got the better of top pick Auston Matthews and the Toronto Maple Leafs. In what could bloom to be the next big rivalry of superstars, Laine helped the Jets rally back from a 4-0 deficit by scoring his first career hat trick that included the game winner in overtime. Matthews had a chance to win it in overtime on a breakaway but was turned away by Michael Hutchinson. Laine came streaking down the wing and wired one past Frederik Andersen giving Winnipeg a 5-4 overtime win. After the game, Laine downplayed his individual accomplishment in favour of the team’s win.
“It’s always nice to score,” Laine said. “It was just amazing to help my team to win with those goals”.
With the sun shining bright on Investors Group field for the Heritage Classic, it was Oilers Cam Talbot who was shined brightest. Talbot stopped 31 shots helping the Edmonton Oilers spoil the festivities with a 3-0 shutout win. Mark Letetsu scored shorthanded and Darnell Nurse and Zack Kassian completed the scoring for the Oilers in front of 33,240 fans.
The Jets dropped the opening of a home-and-home series against the Dallas Stars but exacted revenge back on home ice. The Stars held off the Jets in Dallas 3-2 thanks to Ante Niemi’s 28 saves. Stars Tyler Seguin scored the game winner and Joel Armia and Mark Scheifele tallied the Jets goals in the loss. Two nights later, Patrik Laine made sure the Jets had the last laugh. Laine scored twice, both on the power play, with pinpoint accuracy. Tyler Myers opened the scoring and Kyle Connor scored his first career goal helping the Jets bounce back against the Stars 4-1.
The Jets travelled to Denver one night later and edged the Colorado Avalanche 1-0. Shawn Matthias scored the lone goal of the game and his second of the year and Michael Hutchinson turned away 37 shots for the shutout.
After winning two straight, the Jets dropped a Sunday matinee to Kyle Okposo and the Buffalo Sabres 3-1. Okposo scored twice and Sabres goaltender Robin Lehner played brilliantly saving 37 of 38 shots. Nikolaj Ehlers scored the lone Jets goal.
Winnipeg fell victim to another hot goaltender. Washington Capitals netminder Braden Holtby steered away 43 Jets shots in a 3-2 victory at the MTS Centre. Down 2-0 in the third, the Jets fought back with Mark Scheifele getting his team on the board with under 7 minutes left. With 2:25 minutes left in the game, Joel Armia fought hard on the boards to set up Adam Lowry tying goal. Capitals forward Jay Beagle ended the Jets rally with 30 seconds left winning the faceoff and backhanding a goal past Connor Hellebuyck for the game winner. Helllebuyck had 24 saves in a losing effort.
The Winnipeg Jets conclude their home-and-home series with the Washington Capitals to kick off a three game road trip.
The month of November will be a gruleing month as 10 out of 16 games will be on the road.
Photos by Bryan Mesias | Filipino Journal