The Winnipeg Jets brought an injury-depleted group consisting of a top-6, a top-3 and a bunch of "others" into Dallas for a visit with the Stars, but it turned out that it didn't matter in the least. Buoyed by big nights by Adam Lowry and Michael Hutchinson, the Jets hammered a listless Dallas team that appears to be having a "Ruff" time in their own end. It didn't help that Kari Lehtonen looked out of sorts early and got the hook for the home team in green.
Goals by Mathieu Perreault (PPG) and Blake Wheeler sandwiched a Tyler Sequin power-play marker in the first, and though Antoine Roussel tied it up early in the second it was three unanswered Jets tallies that sealed the deal. Lowry pocked a pair in 2:19, and Michael Frolik added a shorty to finish off the scoring.
This Jets team continues to roll despite the injuries. Colour me impressed.
- The Jets continue to roll despite the massive amount of injuries that the team has sustained, to some might important players. This has perhaps been Paul Maurice's finest hour, as this team just keeps on winning. 5-0-2 in their last seven. Impressive.
- Dustin Byfuglien was again very impressive on the blue-line, adding another two helpers and playing well over 20-minutes. On top of that, he appears to be making Ben Chiarot look like an NHL player which is a very good thing. #BuffForNorris
- Adam Lowry scored his third and fourth goals of the year, passing Mark Scheifele on the goal-scoring list and perhaps on the centre depth-chart. With Bryan Little and Mathieu Perreault now the one-two up the middle, I'm starting to wonder if Lowry should be the third-line pivot full time. Is 55 hurt?
- Speaking of Mathieu Perreault, how good has he been lately? He's been great since being moved back from his banishment to the wing (though I realize he was there again tonight thanks to Evander Kane's suspension), but he's been a revelation on the PP. It's been pretty darn good since they switched to the umbrella and allowed him to run it. Good stuff.
- Michael Hutchinson was again very good in net, stopping 26 of 28 for a tidy 0.929 sv% on the night. With Hutch starting the fourth of the last seven games, and Ondrej Pavelec posting an 0.847 in his last six starts, you have to figure that Hutch starts in Colorado on Thursday. Right?
- Andrew Ladd, Bryan Little and Blake Wheeler continue to produce like a top-line should, as the trio combined for a goal and three helpers. This team really needs these guys to be their best players, and they usually are.
- In an extreme rarity, very much likely due to the score being out of hand early, the Jets only saw two skaters play less than 10 minutes, with only Anthony Peluso (8:20) and Chris Thorburn (8:49) falling under the line. Odd to see T.J. Galiardi come back from an 11-game banishment to see more ice than Thor, Tony, Jim Slater and Matt Halischuk, though.
- How bad is Ales Hemsky at defense that he was deemed not good enough to play on this team due to his defensive deficiencies? Yikes. The Stars and the Avs both look horrible in their own end this year. Maybe they should've looked into hiring PoMo.
- Speaking of PoMo, how on Earth is it possible that this guy was out of work for so long AND had to head overseas to Russian just to find a paying gig? The guy is making chicken salad out of this current lineup. I'm still not sold on 100% of his decisions, but it's clear that he has the ear of this team which Claude Noel never had.
- This good string of play from the reinforcements will certainly make things interesting when healthy bodies return and suspensions end, especially on the blue-line. With Toby, Bogo and Clitsome all making big coin, who do they push out? Will be interesting to see what happens, but before that it's on to Colorado with a visit to the equally awful defensively Avalanche.