Winnipeg, Manitoba (NHN)-The Vegas Golden Knights edged the Winnipeg Jets 2-1 Sunday afternoon to win game 5 of the Western Conference Final and advanced to the Stanley Cup Finals, winning the series four games to one.

Winnipegger Ryan Reaves counted the game winner in the second period, tipping a Luca Sbisa shot past Jets goaltender to score his first goal of the playoffs.

"It's been a while since I scored and helped the team on the scoresheet," said Reaves. "I don't think the points for matter. It's definitely special that I got the win in Winnipeg."

"The whole mentality of this team is 'next man up.' We've got a deep team, we've got a lot of good players. You look at the season this team's had even before I got here, everybody's stepping up. The guys that weren't playing, msyelf included, we stayed ready. We had fun while we were doing it, but we worked hard so when we were called upon we were ready to go," said Reaves.

Alex Tuch also scored for Vegas.

Marc-Andre Fleury made 31 saves for the Golden Knights.

Josh Morrissey scored for Winnipeg. Connor Hellebuyck turned aside 30 shots for the Jets.

“No, I thought this was our year. You could see how hard everyone was working. How much everyone wanted it. That’s why this one’s tough," said Hellebuyck.

“Every game was tight. Every game was a matter of inches, almost. They capitalized when they needed the chance and it just sucks," said Mark Scheifele.

Alex Tuch put Vegas on the board 5:11 into the contest, taking advantage of a turnover in the Jets end when Jets defenceman Josh Morrissey's pass careened off of the skate of the forechecking Ryan Carpenter and ended up right on Tuch's blade.

Tuch coralled the disc, cradling it before unleashing a low wrister which beat Winnipeg goaltender Connor Hellebuyck just inside the left post.

The goal was his 6th of the playoffs.

"I had a feeling Hellebuyck was going to slide over with me so I shot it. Just far side low. It's one of the spots I've been taught to shoot since I was five years old," said Tuch.

Josh Morrissey got the Jets on even terms late in the first period when he stepped into a puck won off a faceoff by Bryan Little and blasted a slapshot past Vegas goaltender Marc-Andre Fleury from the high slot, beating him high glove side to make it 1-1 at 17:14.

The goal was his first of the playoffs.

Ryan Reaves gave the Golden Knights the lead 13:21 into the second period, tipping a Luca Sbisa shot from the point past a screened Hellebuyck to make it 2-1.

The Jets tried in vain to tie the game and were granted few quality chances in the third period.

Blake Wheeler came the closest, getting a low wrister off with a clear path to the net with just under four minutes remaining in regulation but was unsuccessful.

“It was their time. They’re just playing really well. And you have to give them all the credit. Typically in a seven-game series, the better team wins. Coming into it, I thought we had the best team. I felt that way and obviously I’m a little bit biased, standing in this room feeling that we had a great opportunity. And that team just ... it was their time. They made it really tough for us. We had to work for everything we got and even when we broke them down, we just couldn’t seem to ever gain the type of momentum we needed to get this thing on our terms," said Wheeler.

Jets Head Coach Paul Maurice said there was a cost to get to the Conference Finals. "How we got here. First of all, in the end when you add it all up, they were good. They were real good. Did not give any easy offence. We had to grind and work and work for the chances that we did get. There's a cost to that. And it stacked up," he said.

Vegas Head Coach Gerard Gellant said first eight minutes of the game were key in the win over Winnipeg. "The biggest thing in our game was the first eight minutes of the hockey game. I thought we came out and the shots were seven or eight to one. I thought that was real good," he said. SHOTS-VEGAS 32 WINNIPEG 32


Winnipeg, Manitoba (NHN)-Jonathan Marchessault put his money where his mouth was Monday night.

After calling the game a 'must win' following their game one loss to the Jets Saturday and stating they were going to see what kind of team they were the 27 year-old winger fired a pair of goals to pace the Vegas Golden Knights to a 3-1 win over the Winnipeg Jets and tied their Western Conference Final Series at a game apiece.

"I mean if you're going to talk to the media and say stuff like you have to better I think you need by example," he said. "I tried to do that tonight."

Both of his tallies came on the backhand, the first a neat backhand deke in the first period and the second a similar goal off of Reilly Smith feed which he parked past Winnipeg goaltender Connor Hellebuyck, just inside the left post.

Tomas Tatar also scored for Vegas.

Marc-Andre Fleury made 30 stops for the Golden Knights.

Kyle Connor scored Winnipeg's lone goal on the night.

Connor Hellebuyck turned aside 25 shots for the Jets.

Tomas Tatar got the Golden Knights on the board 13:23 into the first period, stuffing a puck past Jets goaltender Connor Hellebuyck's stick to make it 1-0 Vegas.

Defenceman Shea Theodore hit Tatar with a pass from the slot which he attempted to one time past Hellebuyck but was stymied.

Tatar chased the rebound behind the goal line and hammered the puck past Hellebuyck's stick at the goal post to give the Golden Knights their first lead of the series.

The goal was Tatar's first of the post-season.

"You just wanna drop everything and play my game," said Tatar, who was only playing in his 4th post-season game after being made a healthy scratch for most of the playoffs.

"You play your hockey like you did before. Obviously after the goal you start feeling better and better."

Tatar got wind of the plan to insert him in the lineup during the morning skate.

"I kind of knew. I’ve played enough games in the NHL to not be worried before the game, but obviously you get a little nervous when you see the crowd and it’s a conference final, but it wasn’t anything (that affected me)," he said. Jonathan Marchessault made it 2-0 off a turnover by Jets winger Kyle Connor in the neutral zone.

Connor misplayed the puck at centre ice and Vegas winger Riley Smith knocked the disc to Marchessault who skated in and put a backhand deke on Hellebuyck before sliding the puck through his pads.

The goal was his 5th of the post-season.

There was no scoring in the second period.

Kyle Connor scored 7:17 into the third, sneaking a puck tight to the post past Vegas goaltender Andre-Marc Fleury to get Winnipeg on the board.

The goal was his 3rd of the playoffs.

Tyler Myers took control of the puck from behind his net and rushed up ice before dishing to Ehlers, who walked the blue line before getting the puck to Connor who strided left to a sharper angle before shooting.

Fleury was unable to squeeze the puck and it beat him between his torso and elbow.

The momentum swing was short lived however as Marchessault scored his second of the contest just 1:28 later, lifting a backhand past Hellebuyck to restore the Golden Knights two-goal lead.

Reilly Smith charged into the Winnipeg zone with the puck before feeding Marchessault who lifted a backhander past Hellebucyk's right pad to make it 3-1.

Jets Head Coach Paul Maurice thought the Golden Knights played a better game in game two. "They were better, for sure," he said.

"There's two things. The one that cost us I think is that we is pushed too early, got out of our routes too early. Then the second piece of that was what I'd said earlier is that we didn't do anything clean, we didn't do anything quickly. That part I think was true of the whole game and we want to be better there."

Winnipeg Captain Blake Wheeler said they didn't play terribly, but a few bad moments cost them. “There was about 57 minutes of that game that was pretty good for us. Three minutes of it got away from us. They could have scored four goals in three minutes. We just gotta stay with it better. Realize that they have some guys on their team that can make plays as well. There’s going to be moments in this series where they get scoring chances. They’re gonna create some momentum and put the puck in the net. It’s just a matter of how you react to it," he said.

“They (Golden Knights) scored two goals and we just kind of got away from it. The second one was tough, didn’t really see what happened. Just kind of a breakdown. Gave up a breakaway off the next faceoff. Just little things that are easy to clean up.”

There is little panic coming from the Jets dressing room about their latest loss according to defenceman Jacob Trouba.

“It’s a series. I don’t think anybody is panicking. We’ve been here before. It’s a long series. We’re going to go to Vegas. We like our road game, we like where it was in the Nashville series and we’re going to try and bring the same effort.”

Game three goes Wednesday night in Las Vegas.


Winnipeg, Manitoba (NHN)-Dustin Byfuglien and Mark Scheifele each had a goal and an assist and Connor Hellebuyck made 19 saves as the Winnipeg Jets downed the Vegas Golden Knights 4-2 to take a 1-0 series lead in the Western Conference Final.

The Jets scored just over a minute into the contest, building a 3-0 lead before the Golden Knights were able to respond with a goal of their own.

Patrik Laine and Joel Armia scored for the Jets.

Blake Wheeler had three assists for Winnipeg.

Brayden McNabb scored for the Golden Knights.

Marc-Andre Fleury turned aside 22 shots for Vegas.

Dustin Byfuglien gave Winnipeg the lead just over a minute into the opening period.

The Jet defenceman took a drop pass from Mark Scheifele just inside the Vegas blue line which he promptly fired past Vegas goaltender Marc-Andre Fleury, beating him blocker side to give the Jets a 1-0 lead at 1:05.

With Alex Tuch off for hooking, the Jets power play gave them a 2-0 lead as Blake Wheeler found Patrik Laine unguarded and hit him with a crisp, cross ice pass which he one timed past a sprawling Marc-Andre Fleury.

Wheeler and Paul Stastny exchanged passes as Laine moved in from the blue line on Fleury's right side before the Jets captain hit him with a cross ice pass which the second-year Finn promptly fired past Fleury.

The goal was the 4th of the playoffs.

"It's obviously huge to get the first goal," said Laine. "I think it's just everybody maybe feels a little bit looser on the ice. It's hard to say. For me, it gives me a confidence a lot, because we're in the lead and it's easier to play."

Winnipeg went 3-0 when Joel Armia redirected a puck past Fleury at 7:35 of the first period when he was cutting through the crease and knocked the goaltender's stick out of his hand.

Referee Kelly Sutherland ruled that he had interfered with Fleury and disallowed the goal but Jets Head Coach Paul Maurice challenged the ruling that the goaltender had been interfered successfully and the Jets went up 3-0.

The goal was the 2nd of the post-season.

Brayden McNabb got the Golden Knights on the board 35 seconds later when he converted a Jonathan Marchessault feed by wiring a wrister past Hellebuyck at 8:10.

Marchesseault took control of the disc behind the Jets net before hitting McNabb with a crisp forehand pass at the top of the left faceoff circle which he promptly fired past Hellebucyk, beating him low glove side.

The goal was his 2nd of the playoffs.

"A disallowed goal turns into a goal," said McNabb. "It's unfortunate but it happens. We reset it, we were able to get one right after." With McNabb off for hooking Mark Scheifele tipped a puck past Fleury to give them a 4-1 lead.

Dustin Byfuglien shot the puck which Scheifele got his stick on from about 20 feet out as the disc went underneath Fleury's glove hand.

The tally was his 12th in 13 playoff games this season.

William Karlsson cut into the Jets lead at 15:55 of the 2nd, tipping a hard Jonathan Marchessault feed from the point past Hellebuyck as Vegas capitalized on a power play to make it 4-2.

The goal was his 5th of the post-season.

“Not the start we wanted and they just played two days ago, but they were game ready and we weren’t. We’re going to see what kind of team we are. (Monday) is definitely a must-win game. As a group, as long as you move on, everyone needs to step up if you want to win against the best team in the league. Their push was good, but we knew there were going to come. We didn’t get as many shots on goal as we wanted, but most of that is because of the first period. We were better in the second and third, but they played real well with the lead and that was hard for us," said Marchessault.

There was no scoring in the third period.

The Golden Knights weren't able to mount much of an offence at all in the final frame, not registering their first shot-on-goal until past the 17 minute mark.

Vegas Head Coach Gerard Gallant was honest in his assessment of his club's performance. "We chased the game all night and they (Jets) played a real good game . They played a great defensive game. They created offensively too."

Game 2 goes Monday night in Winnipeg.



Tuesday, 08 May 2018 04:17

Preds shutout Jets 4-0 to force Game 7

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Winnipeg, Manitoba (NHN)-Filip Forsberg and Viktor Ardvidsson each fired a pair of goals and Pekka Rinne stopped all 34 shots he faced as the Nashville Predators staved off elimination by downing the Winnipeg Jets 4-0 Monday night.

The Predators, who are now 5-0 after a loss in the 2018 playoffs, scored goals in each period to send the series to a 7th and deciding game Thursday night in Nashville.

Winnipeg went 0-for-4 on the power play on the night and weren't able to mount much of an attack on the night.

"I think the power play is probably just a microcosm of the way we played," said Paul Stastny. "We probably weren’t moving as well or as sharp as we wanted to be. You could say that but then again, the one Wheels fed to me, I just missed and if that goes in, it’s a different story. Sometimes, it’s a great pass that I don’t see until the last second. It’s one of those nights. We’ll watch video on it tomorrow, forget about it, learn from what makes us good.”

"It was a big challenge," said Predators centre Ryan Johansen of keeping Winnipeg's power play unit off the board. "Our guys did a phenomenal job of making sure they gave them (Jets) nothing."

Winnipeg Jets Captain Blake Wheeler said they couldn't find their offensive game.

"I just think it’s the way its been. They played a good game tonight, got out to that lead and it’s just tough. It’s just tough to come back. We just couldn’t find a way to get that first one. I think our belief was, if we were able to get that first one, we were going to get rolling and, you know, come back in this game. We just couldn’t find a way to get that first one.”

Roman Josi and Ryan Johansen each had a pair of assists for Nashville.

Pekka Rinne turned aside 34 shots for the Predators.

Connor Hellebuyck made 25 saves for Winnipeg.

Viktor Ardvidsson got Nashville on the board early as he redirected a Roman Josi shot from the point past Jets goaltender Connor Hellebuyck while on his way down to the ice.

Initially Referee Wes McCauley ruled no goal on the play due to Ardvidsson's stick contacting the puck above the normal height of his shoulders but his ruling was overturned following video review that clearly showed the disc contacting the middle of Ardvidsson's stick shaft held close to his torso and below the shoulders.

The goal was his 4th of the playoffs.

Filip Forsberg gave the Predators a 2-0 lead 8:16 into the second period off a nice individual effort. Forsberg had returned to the Nashville bench to get new stick and got himself back onside just before the puck arrived at the blue line. He got inside on Jets defenceman Ben Chiarot, bumping the Jet defenceman who was skating backwards just outslide the blue line after Craig Smith fired the disc up the boards from his own end.

Forsberg battled for position while driving for the net before beating Hellebucyk short side just under the glove to score his 6th goal of the post-season.

Filip Forsberg scored 5:55 into the third period, converting a Victor Ardvidsson feed from behind the Winnipeg goal to make it 3-0 Nashville.

Forsberg stopped the puck before sliding the disc backwards through his legs and shot it with his stick inbetween his legs past a shocked Hellebuyck to score. The goal was his 7th of the playoffs.

"It just takes a lot of practice," said Forsberg. "You just try to maybe do it in practice once in a while if you get time and space for it in a game you try to put it up."

"It's hard to argue that one wasn't the biggest so far of the year tonight," said Ryan Johansen of Forsberg's tally.

With the Jets trailing Nashville 3-0 Jets Head Coach Paul Maurice elected to pull his goaltender early.

Viktor Ardvidsson scored into an empty net at 15:58 to make it 4-0.

Predators Head Coach Peter Laviolette said his club was confident heading into the game. "I think you always try to say the right things going into a game like this. 'We're confident.' But our guys truly were."

Jets Head Coach Paul Maurice said now that the series has come down to a single game he won't be changing his approach heading into game 7.

"Yes, but every day since September 15th, right? This isn’t, ‘Hey, let’s really try hard now. It’s Game 7,’” Maurice said. “I get it. It’s frustrating (Game 6). It’s painful. You were right there. It’s an elimination game. There have been an awful lot of seven game series that have happened in the history of the National Hockey League, and somebody was up 3-2 in every single one of them. “They were good on the road, we were good in our last game. It’s gonna be a hell of a game.”

Game 7 goes Thursday night in Nashville.



Nashville, TN (NHN)-Kyle Connor scored twice and added an assist to pace the Winnipeg Jets to a 6-2 win over the Nashville Predators Saturday night to push the 1st place overall club in the NHL during the regular season to the brink of elimination.

The Jets will be looking to advance to the Western Conference Final with a win over the Predators Monday night in Winnipeg.

Connor, who was scoreless in the playoffs until this point led the four goal outburst by the Jets as they took control of the contest.

Mark Scheifele and Dustin Byfuglien each had a goal and assist and Blake Wheeler had a pair of assists for the Jets, who will look to close out the series Monday night at home.

Paul Stastny, Dustin Byfuglien and Mathieu Perreault also scored for Winnipeg.

Connor Hellebuyck turned aside 38 shots for the Jets.

Yannick Weber and Ryan Johansen scored for Predators.

Pekka Rinne and Juuse Saros combined to stop 26 shots for Nashville.



Winnipeg, Manitoba (NHN)-Tyler Sikura had a goal and an assist to pace the Rockford IceHogs to a 3-1 win over the Manitoba Moose Saturday afternoon.

The win gave Rockford a 2-0 series lead in their Western Conference Central Division Final.

For the second straight game the Moose scored the game's first goal but Rockford came back to take control and post a win.

Chris DiDomenico, Carl Dahlstrom and Andreas Martinsen added singles for Rockford.

Collin Delia turned aside 33 shots for the IceHogs.

Brendan Lemieux scored the lone goal for the Moose.

Eric Comrie stopped 17 shots for Manitoba.

Brendan Lemieux scored with just under four minutes remaining in the opening period as he deflected a Nic Petan feed past IceHogs goaltender Collin Delta to put Manitoba up 1-0 at 16:03.

The goal was his 3rd of the playoffs.

Rockford evened the contest at 18:38 when Tyler Sikura scooped up a redbound off a shot from defenceman Victor Svedberg to make it 1-1 and fired the disc past Moose goaltender Eric Comrie.

The goal was his 3rd of the post-season.

Chris DiDomenico gave the IceHogs the lead 4:45 into the second period when he cut off a puck along the right side boards before working his way to the high slot before wiring a low wrister past Comrie to make it 2-1.

Carl Dahlstrom blasted a puck past Comrie just over the 16 minute mark to give Rockford a 3-1 lead at 16:03.

Gustave Forsling hit Dahlstrom with a crisp partner pass along the blue line which he stopped before leaning into a slapshot that sailed past Comrie.

The goal was his 4th of the playoffs.

Andreas Martinsen added an empty netter late in the third period to seal the in for the IceHogs.

The series resumes Wednesday in Rockford.



Winnipeg, Manitoba (NHN)-The Nashville Predators got goals from Ryan Hartman and P.K. Subban and Pekka Rinne stopped 32 shots as the Predators tied up their Conference Quarter Final at two games apiece Thursday night as they downed the Winnipeg Jets 2-1.

The Jets lost for the first time on home ice since February 27th, also against the Predators.

With Nashville's win the series is now a best-of-three affair with the Predators having home ice advantage. A patient Predators team waited for their scoring chances on the night and didn't score their first marker until there was 2:40 remaining in the opening period as Ryan Hartman capitalized on a turnover and snapped a high wrister past Jets goaltender Connor Hellebucyk.

The disc deflected of the shin pad of Jet centre Andrew Copp and ended up right on Hartman's stick.

The Predators 4th liner made no mistake and put his club up 1-0 to score his 2nd of the playoffs.

P.K. Subban scored the other Predators goal on a second period power play with 5:24 remaining, blasting a slapshot off a Filip Forsberg feed past Hellebuyck who was partially screened on the play.

Subban hit Forsberg with a quick pass by the right faceoff circle which Forsberg sent right back to a waiting Subban, who one-timed a slapshot past the Winnipeg goaltender.

The goal was his 3rd of the post-season.

“I think the biggest thing is we had full commitment through our lineup to play defence. In our zone when bounces didn't go our way, we worked the puck out of the zone. We got in the neutral zone, we got pucks deep, we forechecked when we needed to and we paid attention to the details," he said. “I think last game, the details are kind of what cost us. This game, we paid attention to all of them for a full 60 (minutes)," said Subban.

Nashville was content to block the centre of the ice and force Winnipeg's forwards to the outside and the Jets were unable to mount an attack as there was virtually no forecheck in the third period.

Winnipeg remained out of synch offensively and did not register their first shot on goal in the third period until the 12 minute mark.

"They had five guys behind the red line and we were a little stubborn. Didn’t want to make them turnaround and bring the puck out. So that would be the credit you’d give them. They pounced on a loose puck and we chased the game. Just kinda didn’t want to do the easy thing to make them turnaround," said Jets captain Blake Wheeler of Nashville's strategy.

Patrik Laine finally broke through for the Jets with 50 seconds remaining in regulation, converting a Paul Stastny feed past Rinne to make it 2-1.

The goal was his 3rd of the playoffs.

Jets winger Bryan Little said they knew Nashville was going to respond after getting blown out Tuesday night

"This was a big game and we knew they were going to give us their best. They're a good team over there and they came out and played a good game, really good defensive game and gave us some trouble tonight. It's back to the drawing board in Nashville," he said.

Jets Head Coach Paul Maurice said the score altered the game plan.

"You can't play our game (speed and puck movement) unless you move the puck better than we did. I would not agree if the theory is we played our game as well as we can and they (Nashville) played their game, a new style of game and it just doesn't match and we should go home and change everything." Predators Head Coach Peter Laviolette said he could tell his club was ready for Thursday's game.

"I really liked the pre-game skate," he said. "I mean the fact that we were out there because we didn't practice yesterday so we got it going. Get our bodies moving a little bit," he said. "You could just tell in the meetings. You could tell in the skate that it was just sharp and they were on point. They were just ready to play," he added.

Game 5 goes Saturday night in Nashville.



Winnipeg, Manitoba (NHN)-Balke Wheeler fired the game winning tally with just under five minutes to go in regulation to lift the Winnipeg Jets to a 7-4 win and a 2-1 series lead over the Nashville Predators.

With P.K. Subban off for high sticking Winnipeg's Nikolaj Ehlers the Jets power play worked the puck around until they found the Jets captain alone on the left side of Rinne about 25 feet out.

Wheeler wired a wrister just inside the post to give the Jets the win and series lead in what was an epic playoff battle between the two best clubs during the regular season.

The Jets captain finished with two goals and an assist.

Dustin Byfuglien also scored twice and added an assist while Paul Stastny scored once and added two assists. Mark Scheifele added a pair of assists for the Jets.

Nashville dominated the opening period scoring three times before Winnipeg stormed back in the second frame with four tallies of their own, including three goals in 2:51 before the Predators tied it up in the third period.

Connor Hellebuyck stopped 26 shots for Winnipeg.

Mike Fisher, P.K Subban, Austin Watson and Filip Forsberg scored for the Predators.

Pekka Rinne turned aside 38 shots for Nashville.

Mike Fisher scored just under five minutes into the opening frame, poking a loose puck past Connor Hellebuyck to give Nashville a 1-0 lead. With Blake Wheeler off for tripping P.K Subban fired a slap shot that Hellebuyck got a piece of but the disc trickled across the line.

The goal was his 2nd of the playoffs.

Austin Watson made it 3-0 at 17:35 when he picked the far corner on Hellebuyck as he shot through a screen on his off wing.

The goal was his 5th of the post-season.

Paul Stastny got the Jets on the board 2:38 into the second period when he deflected a Jacob Trouba shot past Pekka Rinne to make it 3-1.

The play was reviewed and a goal awarded when replay showed the disc careened off the center part of the net and came out before anyone was aware.

The goal was his 3rd of the playoffs.

With the teams playing 4-on-4 Dustin Byfuglien pulled Winnipeg to within a goal at 5:11 as he blew a slapshot past Rinne, beating him blocker side just inside the right post to make it 3-2.

Jacob Trouba tied the contest just 18 seconds later when he converted a Blake Wheeler feed past Rinne, pausing a moment before beating him with a high shot to make it 3-3.

Dustin Byfuglien gave the Jets the lead with 45 seconds left in the second period when Patrik Laine spotted him alone by the far faceoff dot and hit him with a crisp cross ice pass which he promptly one timed past Rinne.

The goal was his 3rd of the playoffs.

Byfuglien was a physical presence in game 3, throwing heavy body checks in addition to scoring twice and adding an assist after spotting Nashville a 3 goal lead.

Filip Forsberg tied it up 7:40 into the third period on the power play.

Forsberg took a Ryan Johansen pass before moving to the high slot and unleashed a wrister that beat Hellebuyck high blocker side to make it 4-4.

Blake Wheeler fired the game winner with 4:59 remaining in regulation to make it 5-4.

Wheeler and Brandon Tanev added an empty netters to seal the win for the Jets.

Nashville goaltender Pekka Rinne attributed the loss to the time of year.

"Yeah obviously it’s difficult but at the same time that’s playoff hockey. They have a really good team and we got in trouble in the second period and they executed. Obviously that 4-on-4 didn’t go as planned and they were able to score a couple there. But it was another emotional game. Highs and lows. But I think that’s the way it’s going to be against these two teams. But obviously we got to just look at this game and find the positives and move on. Obviously it’s easier said than done. And get ready for Game 4.”

Ryan Ellis was more succint with his take on game 3.

“We stopped playing. We didn't play hard and they really turned it up. So that's exactly what's going to happen when one team quits playing and the other one turns it up. For us, I think we just need to learn from our mistakes and really it's just about playing the game for the full 60 (minutes).”

Predators Head Coach Peter Laviolette said his club played a solid first period.

“Like I said, the first period we’re pretty happy with. The third period, maybe 12 minutes in, we’re pretty happy with. We had a bad second period, similar to the third period we had back at Bridgestone (in Game 2). I don’t know if it was necessarily systematically or that we didn’t attack the ice and come out with the mindset of being read to play. Two of the goals were 4-on-4, so I don’t know if it’s necessarily 5-on-5 but that being said, I don’t like the way we played the second period. We didn’t attack the game enough inside that period. We we’ll go back and look at it.”

Jets Head Coach Paul Maurice thought his mobile defence took the necessary ice to start a comeback in the second period.

“It’s not necessarily a specific adjustment but there’s a truth to our skating. Our back end gets up the ice with the play and if they had an opportunity to take ice, they took the ice. That’s standard for our game and there was probably a little more room because they had a 3-0 lead so we were able to get up and activate in. I really think that was an important change for us."

Winnipeg defenceman Jacob Trouba said the Jets comeback amounted to settling down and playing the way they were capable of.

"I don’t know. We weren’t nervous in the second," said Trouba.

“Paul just came in here and told us, ‘Go play hockey. Don’t worry about everything around (town) with what’s going on with the playoffs, and coming home. Play loose, have fun.’ That’s what we did.”



Saturday, 21 April 2018 03:13

Jets clinch series in Game 5 win over Wild

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Winnipeg, Manitoba (NHN)-The Winnipeg Jets fired four first period goals and Connor Hellebuyck stopped all 30 shots he faced as the Winnipeg Jets clinched their first round playoff series by trouncing the Minnesota Wild 5-0 Friday night.

The playoff series win was their first in franchise history.

Winnipeg won the series 4 games to 1.

The shutout was the second of the playoffs for Hellebucyk, who didn't give up a goal in his last seven periods.

“I guess I did my job, right? I didn't let any in,” he said with a chuckle. “I thought the team was great in front of me. The guys' details are fantastic. Anytime you can get that many (goals) in the first period, that kind of sinks the other team, especially deep in a series like this. They definitely got this one early.” The Jets will face the winner of the Nashville Predators and Colorado Avalanche series, which Nashville leads 3-1. Jacob Trouba, Bryan Little, Brandon Tanev and Joel Armia scored and Dustin Byfuglien and Paul Stastny each had a pair of assists.

Mark Scheifele had a goal and an assist for the Jets.

"I think we just played aggressive. We didn't sit back. We knew if we played our game, if we got a couple of goals early then in the back of their minds we could try to make them crack. We're confident at home, we didn't change our style. Our big guys that first shift get a big goal and from there on every line just kept going, kept attacking," said veteran centreman Paul Stastny who was acquired at the trade deadline and whose key faceoff win resutled in Winnipeg's second goal.

Connor Hellebuyck turned aside 30 shots to pick up the win for Winnipeg.

Devan Dubnyk and Alex Stalock combined to stop 21 shots for the Wild.

Jacob Trouba scored 31 seconds into the contest to give the Jets a 1-0 lead.

Mark Scheifele beat Charlie Coyle to a loose puck at the side boards before tipping the disc to himself and skating up the side boards before finding Trouba at the top of the opposite circle, who moved in and beat Devan Dubnyk with a wrister.

The tally was the first playoff goal of his NHL career.

Bryan Little put Winnipeg up 2-0 5:42 into the first when he reached out and redirected a Dustin Byfuglien shot from the right point.

Paul Stastny won a faceoff on his forehand and got the puck to Byfuglien who got the shot on net which Little tipped from thirty feet out.

The goal was his first of the playoffs.

Brandon Tanev made it 3-0 at 11:10 when he pickpocketed Wild defenceman Jonas Brodin in the high slot. Matt Dumba attempted a partner pass which hit Brodin in the left skate.

Tanev took control of the disc, pivoted and fired a wrister that beat Dubnyk just under his glove.

Joel Armia extended the Winnipeg lead to 4-0 just 49 seconds later when he tipped a Dustin Byfuglien slapshot past Dubnyk which ended the Minnesota goaltender's night.

He was replaced by Alex Stalock.

There was no scoring in the second period.

Mark Scheifele scored on the power play 32 seconds into the third converting a Paul Stastny feed past Stalock.

The goal was his 4th of the playoffs.

Minnesota forward Eric Staal was succinct in his assessment of the game. "It couldn't have gone any worse at the start for us, and it couldn't have gone any better for them. They got the momentum and ran with it, especially early. It's not what we had envisioned coming here. We made some mistakes and it cost us. You get behind the 8-ball by that much and it's pretty difficult hill to climb back from."

Mikko Koivu said the start Winnipeg got did their season in.

"Yeah, that (first period) was the game if you look back. We couldn't defend like we did the first two games here. We know they want to start hard, that's what they do at home. But like I said, first two games we were good at it. But tonight, we couldn't respond. Thought we had our chances but at the second there, we couldn't capitalize and that's what you get."

Wild Head Coach Bruce Boudreau said he thought his club was ready to go heading into the game. "Well I thought we were rattled. I mean we couldn't handle the puck very well, we weren't making our passes in the first ten minutes and it looked like we were nervous out there."

Jets captain Blake Wheeler said they took a step forward with the series win. “It’s a great step. It’s not time to dwell on that, but at the same time, I think we’re proud of the work we put in. Minnesota is a great team. To advance in the playoffs is a big accomplishment, especially when you’re playing a group like that, there’s a ton of playoff experience. Every year, it seems like they’re a contender. Those guys had a great season. Like I said, we feel fortunate to be moving on."

The game also marked the first playoff series win for 10-year Jets/Thrashers veteran Bryan Little who felt they needed to wrap up the series at home.

“To get it done tonight and not go back to Minnesota, that was also big, not to give them any momentum in the series and go back there. We wanted to come out hard tonight and make sure we got it done.”



Monday, 16 April 2018 04:11

Wild take game three 6-2

Written by
St.Paul, Minnesota (NHN)-The Minnesota Wild got back in their first round series Sunday night as they handed the Winnipeg Jets a 6-2 loss.

Michael Granlund and Zach Parise scored first period power play markers before the Wild took control of the contest, scoring four times in the middle frame.

Matt Dumba, Eric Staal, Jordan Greenway and Michael Foligno rounded out the scoring.

Devan Dubnyk picked up the win for Minnesota, stopping 29 shots.

Connor Hellebuyck and Steve Mason combined to stop 23 shots for Winnipeg.

There was no scoring in the third period.

Blake Wheeler and Tyler Myers scored for the Jets, who still lead the series 2-1.

Game four goes Tuesday night in St. Paul.

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