Jets power down Lightning 3-1

Wednesday, 31 January 2018 03:38 Written by  Published in Game Stories Read 401 times
Winnipeg, Manitoba (NHN)-Michael Hutchinson hadn't spoken to the media since being assigned to the AHL's Manitoba Moose out of training camp.

He did break his silence recently after being recalled to the NHL's Winnipeg Jets this week.

But on Tuesday night he let his play do the talking as he turned aside 23 shots to earn his first win of the season, a 3-1 victory over the visiting Tampa Bay Lightning. Hutchinson, who clearly isn't in the Jets plans for the future, got some help on the evening as the Lightning hit four goalposts.

But he got the win as the Jets kicked off a ten-game home stand by beating the best team in the National Hockey League.

It was a goaltender wing-ding of sorts that landed him his first start of the season as the Jets called up his goaltending partner Eric Comrie over the AHL All Star break before sending him back to Manitoba and recalling Hutchinson, who was participating in the All Star festivities in Utica, New York before catching an early morning flight back to Winnipeg to make his first NHL start of the year.

Indeed a night of strange firsts.

Tampa's Matthew Peca tallied his first of the season with 29 seconds remaining in the opening period.

But that would be all the offence the league leading Lightning could muster on this night as the Jets scored twice in the second period before Bryan Little scored an insurance goal with 5:25 remaining in regulation to give the Jets their first win following the NHL All Star break and their 68th point of the season.

Winnipeg got goals from Patrick Laine, Kyle Connor and Bryan Little.

Blake Wheeler paced the Jets offence as the Captain chipped in two assists on the night.

Matthew Peca scored for Tampa Bay.

Peca opened the scoring late in the first period when he slipped past the Winnipeg defence before Brayden Point hit him with a crisp pass before Peca pivoted and beat Winnipeg goaltender Michael Hutchinson blocker side with a quick wrist shot at 19:31.

The goal was his first of the season.

With the Jets enjoying a two-man advantage Patrick Laine tied the contest 3:30 into the second period when Blake Wheeler threaded the needle finding Laine with a cross ice pass that the Jet captain slipped under Ryan Callahan's stick which the Finn one timed past a stunned Louis Domingue to tie the contest at 1.

The goal was his 23rd of the season.

Kyle Connor pounced on a rebound off a Blake Wheeler shot at 8:55 sliding the puck past Dominigue to give Winnipeg a 2-1 lead.

The goal was his 16th of the season.

Bryan Little scored the insurance marker with 5:25 remaining in the third period, backhanding a rebound off a Matthieu Perreault shot to make it 3-1 Winnipeg.

The goal was his 11th of the season.

SHOTS-TAMPA BAY 24 WINNIPEG 37

ATTENDANCE-15,294

Last modified on Wednesday, 07 February 2018 04:07
Philip Paul-Martin

A well rounded journalist with experience in both print and broadcast mediums, Philip has written news stories with impact, broken national news while at the CBC, anchored radio news and hosted talk show radio. His coverage includes feature writing, game stories and more in-depth pieces during the off-season as well as writing about the National Hockey League and the Winnipeg Jets. He calls Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada home.