If the second half of October showed us anything about the Winnipeg Jets, it’s that they’re battling more than tough Central division opponents – they are also battling themselves. The Jets won two of nine games and now find themselves at the bottom of their division.
Coming off a 3-0 win against the New Jersey Devils, the Jets would try to build momentum on another Eastern Conference opponent as they hosted the Montreal Canadiens. Goaltender Carey Price had other ideas stopping all 36 shots that he faced blanking the Jets 3-0.
After a flat performance against Montreal, Winnipeg would rally from a 3-1 deficit in the third period to beat the Blues in a shootout. Olli Jokinen scored the shootout winner thrilling the MTS Centre crowd. The win came at a steep price as rookie defenseman Jacob Trouba sustained a neck injury going face first into the boards and had to be stretchered off the ice.
The Nashville Predators came into town without the services of netminder Pekka Rinne. Carter Hutton was up to the task turning away 38 shots to give the Predators a 3-1 win.
An old Southeast Division nemesis was next up for Winnipeg. The Jets showed a lot of character against Alexander Ovechkin and the Washington Capitals but fell short losing 5-4 in a shootout. Bryan Little had two goals to counter Ovechkin’s pair.
The Jets kicked off a four game road trip against the Predators. Craig Smith would be the overtime hero and benefactor of a Dustin Byfuglien turnover giving the Preds a 3-2 win. After two heartbreaking losses, the Jets found the win column again edging the Dallas Stars 2-1 in a shootout. Captain Andrew Ladd had the lone shootout goal.
The NHL’s best team, Colorado Avalanche, hosted the Jets and rallied in the third period for a 3-2 win. Avs forward Paul Stastny capitalized on some sloppy defensive play by the Jets for the winner. Two nights later, Jets defenseman Tobias Enstrom would take a late penalty against the St. Louis Blues which led to Alexander Steen scoring the winner with only 59 seconds left to play. The Jets would fly back home only to have the defending Stanley Cup champions waiting for them. Hometown hero Jonathan Toews led the Hawks to a 5-1 win.
The Winnipeg Jets have little time to right the ship as their next five opponents are from the Western Conference. The Jets sit 13th in the West with a 5-8-2 record.