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Byfuglien launches rocket, Little lifts rebound for Jets' 2-1 Victory over Wild

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The Winnipeg Jets made the most of their scoring chances, defeating the Minnesota Wild 2-1 at the MTS Centre.

Bruce Fedyck-USA TODAY Sports

Recap

The Minnesota Wild enjoyed a slight edge in play during the first period, but were held off the score sheet. Ondrej Pavelec and Michael Hutchinson were solid in net for Winnipeg.

The Jets' confidence seemed to grow as the game wore on. Midway through the third period, Dustin Byfuglien fired a bullet with a one-timer shot from the point, on a nice power play feed from Tobias Enstrom. Minnesota goaltender Ilya Bryzgalov looked distracted by Andrew Ladd, who was perched right in front of him. A few minutes later, Bryan Little scored with some good second effort, lifting his own rebound over Bryzgalov.

Minnesota scored late in the game, but ran out of time for the tying goal.

Ten Thoughts

  1. The kids are alright. Adam Lowry stood out, playing a solid, mature game. Josh Morrissey looked good, making some very nice passes. Nic Petan was sound.
  2. Nikolaj Ehlers had his "welcome to the bigs" moment in the second period, when Charlie Coyle went "Wild" on him, repeatedly roughing the smaller Ehlers. When the referee finally ran out of other places to look, he finally called a 2 minute minor on Coyle.
  3. Ehlers showed his speed, but he found that the NHL preseason competition was much more challenging than the Young Stars tournament in Penticton.
  4. Carl Klingberg and Ben Chiarot played strong games. Klingberg forechecked well, and had some offensive chances. Ben Chariot was physically challenging to the Minnesota forwards, and did a great job checking players in front of the Jets net.
  5. Brendon Kichton would probably like to have a few plays back, as he turned the puck over or lost his check on a couple of occasions.
  6. Both Jets goalies looked sound positionally. Hutchinson gave his right goal post a thankful tap, after the puck fluttered by the net during a Wild rally in the third period.
  7. The referees kept the game from getting out of hand, by issuing penalties to those infamous goons, Tobias Enstrom and Michael Frolik (who was penalized twice). Who knows what mayhem might have ensued if those two hotheads weren't allowed to cool their tempers in the sin bin.
  8. Winnipeg won the face-off battle, 32-23. The Jets also out hit the Wild 28-23. The Jets forecheck was particularly physical during the third period.
  9. The Jets power play was effective at controlling the puck. However, many pass/shot attempts were stymied, when the intended passing lane seemed too obvious.
  10. Dustin Byfuglien's goal came at a critical moment in the game, tied 0-0 midway through the third period. If Minnesota had killed off that penalty, they might have obtained a psychological boost. Instead, Byfuglien's goal lifted the Jets, and they never really looked back after that.