Looking for Support

Looking for Support

During the holiday season, many Winnipeg Jets fans wrote a few things down on their wish list to see their team improve in the new year. The emergence of Nikolaj Ehlers and phenomenal rookie Patrik Laine have boosted the Jets in the past month but a lack of secondary scoring has been one of the main issues.

Connor Hellebuyck has played well in net but backup goaltender Michael Hutchinson has been lackluster posting a 4-7-2 record in relief. In what might be a sign of things to come, Alexander Burmistrov was placed on waivers and quickly acquired by the Arizona Coyotes showing that more changes may be on the way to build a better supporting cast for 2017.

After losing to the Edmonton Oilers in heartbreaking fashion, the Winnipeg Jets bounced back at home against the Florida Panthers. After surrendering three goals in the second period, the Jets entered the third trailing 3-2. Bryan Little scored 2:36 into the third and the game remained scoreless after overtime.

Little came up big once again tying it in the shootout and Mathieu Perreault wristed a shot past Roberto Luongo to lift the Jets to a 4-3 shootout victory.

Hellebuyck backstopped Winnipeg to 41 saves in the victory.

Patrik Laine and Nikolaj Ehlers gave the MTS Centre a taste of things to come in 2017 helping steer the Jets to a 4-1 victory over the Colorado Avalanche.

After Laine opened the scoring in the first period, he added two assists in the second on a pair of goals by Ehlers. Hellebuyck picked up his second straight win stopping 27 of 28 shots.

A three game road trip didn’t start the way the Jets wanted it to but made the adjustments to win their last two games.

Winnipeg dropped the first of two games against the host Vancouver Canucks. Blake Wheeler opened the scoring but the Canucks scored four unanswered goals include a pair from Jannik Hansen. Jacob Markstrom turned away 31 shots in the 4-1 Canucks victory. Two nights later, the Jets got their revenge downing the Canucks 4-1. Down 1-0 in the second period, Patrik Laine scored his 19th of the year to tie the game. Nikolaj Ehlers iced the game for the Jets with two goals in the third period and Bryan Little added another. Michael Hutchinson came up with 22 saves in the win.

The Chicago Blackhawks have always been a team that Jets have had trouble beating but this season, the Jets have won all three meetings including two on the road. Connor Hellebuyck has shutdown the Hawks this year with 85 of 87 saves including 34 in a 3-1 victory to close off the road trip.

A quick start against the NHL’s best team wasn’t enough to stop the Columbus Blue Jackets winning streak. Shawn Matthias scored 2:36 into the game to give the Jets an early 1-0 lead. The Jackets responded with four unanswered including a pair from Alexander Wennberg. Sergei Bobrovsky stopped 30 shots for Columbus in 5-3 win to extend their unbeaten streak to 14 games.

New Year’s eve brought fireworks to the MTS Centre but not the ones the Jets fans had hoped for. The New York Islanders scored two goals in the first and two in the second before the Jets could get on the board. John Tavares powered the Isles with a goal and an assist and ex-Jet Andrew Ladd scored in a 6-2 rout of the Jets. Shawn Matthias scored shorthanded and Nikolaj Ehlers scored his 10th of the campaign in the loss.

The Winnipeg Jets (17-19-3) will start off 2017 with three games on the road starting with a pair of games in Florida against the Tampa Bay Lightning and the Florida Panthers.