With a quarter of the season in the books, the Winnipeg Jets find themselves sitting third in the Central division with a 10-7-3 record and have surprised many with their improvement in the defensive department. The Jets have started to figure things out on the back end and Blake Wheeler has provided the offensive spark leading the team in points. It may still be early in the season but Winnipeg is proving that they can consistently perform at a high level.
Fresh off back to back shutouts on the road, the Jets carried over their hot goaltending against the Nashville Predators. Ondrej Pavelec stopped 23 of 24 shots and Mark Scheifele scored the game winner. Blake Wheeler contributed with a goal and an assist in the 3-1 victory.
Sidney Crosby and the high flying Pittsburgh Penguins came into town and got up early on Winnipeg 3-1. The Jets remained poised and chipped away at the lead with goals from Jacob Trouba and Evander Kane off a breakaway. Pittsburgh would eventually win 4-3 in a shootout but the Jets rally to gain a point was considered a moral victory.
The Jets would take on the Ottawa Senators in the Nation’s capital. Pavelec was brilliant once again turning away 37of 38 shots and off-season acquisition Mathier Perreault was the shootout hero as the Jets edged the Sens 2-1.
Unfortunately, Winnipeg would run into a hot goaltender in Carey Price. The Montreal Canadiens blanked the Jets 3-0 at the Bell Centre thanks to Price’s 29 save performance.
Blake Wheeler would right the ship for the Jets against the Carolina Hurricanes. Wheeler scored twice to help his team tame the Hurricanes 3-1.
The Predators hosted the Jets and exacted some revenge for their previous meeting. Wheeler would open the scoring in the second period with a shorthanded marker but Nashville answered with a goal from James Neal. With the game looking like it might go into overtime, Craig Smith of the Preds scored with just over two minutes left in the game to give Nashville a 2-1 win.
Winnipeg closed out their road trip with a game against the Minnesota Wild. Winnipeg found themselves in a 3-0 hole early in the first period. The old Jets might had given up or let the flood gates open on them even more but they stormed back in the third period with goals from Frolik, Kane, and Ladd. Wild’s Marco Scandella scored one minute into overtime but the Jets returned home proud of their effort and with another moral victory despite falling 4-3.
The MTS Centre celebrated its tenth anniversary and the fans were treated to a 3-1 triumph over the New Jersey Devils. Mathieu Perreault scored his first of the year and Mark Scheifele scored the game winner. Coach Paul Maurice talked about his team’s consistency after the game.
“We’ve made some progress in terms of our team identity, we still have some questions to answer about our offensive game,” Maurice said. “There’s been enough consistency in our last 15 games and we’ve been consistent in our losses as well.”
The Jets look to continue their strong play as they welcome the Central Division rival, the St. Louis Blues before heading on a three game road trip to close out November.
Photos by Reilly Berthelette | Filipino Journal