The Winnipeg Jets returned to action this Thursday with a rematch versus the Dallas Stars. The previous game - just two days earlier was probably the Jets most complete 60 minute outing. The goals didn't come, but the Jets controlled the majority of the play. Things would be different this time around. Goals would be scored.
- Hard to argue with the start when the Jets score 15 seconds in. Tyler Myers was credited with an unassisted goal, but there was some nice work by the line of Joel Armia, Adam Lowry and Shawn Matthias prior to the goal. More strong play from a depth line is a welcome change from years past - hopefully they can keep it up. Editor's Note: An assist was later credited to Armia
- The Jets second goal was the first Kyle Connor's career. It was a beauty from his usual spot - at the bottom of the circle to the goalie's left. The same spot he scored from (x 3) in the preseason and repeatedly while he was in college.
- Perhaps my favourite thing about that goal was the set up by Nikolaj Ehlers. Nik seems to relish the opportunity to set up his "young" teammates. Such a difference maker and so unselfish in his play.
- All in; What a first period! 22 shots on goal! (They kept saying 21 on TV, but NHL.com said 22). They kids were flying.
- Period two was a bit more scattered with powerplays dictating the play for lengths of time - there were 5 penalties in this period and 9 total through the first 40. That said, the powerplay treated the Jets well. After many unrewarded efforts in the first (including 8 shots on their first powerplay of the evening), Patrik Laine scored his 5th goal of the season. He'd follow it up with his 6th in the third. Damn! This kid can shoot - heck of a passer too. Dustin Byfuglien and Mark Scheifele drew assists on Laine's first goal. Blake Wheeler and Matthew Perreault assisted on the second.
- The Jets were outshot in the second 12 - 8 in the second, bringing the shot total to 30 - 25 in favour of the Jets after 40 minutes. That's some fast-paced play!
- The Stars opened the third with with a powerplay marker. Tyler Seguin is good at hockey.
- Not long after the goal, Antoine Roussell took Byfuglien's feet out from underneath him - sending the big man hard into the boards. It didn't look good, but he did skate off under his own power. It was geat to see him return, the Jets would be screwed without him.
- Joel Armia has been awesome to start the season. He's been elite defensively and generating a ton of offensive chances for his linemates. He also hit a post in the 2nd. The points will come eventually, right? Cause he still scores like a 4th liner despite his incredible impact on puck possession.
- How good is Patrik Laine? He obviously won't sustain his goal per game pace, but he will score 30? 40? 50? I don't know. Looks like it will be a lot - especially if he can continue to put up 7 shots in a game as he did tonight.
- Connor Hellebuyck faced a ton of pucks today and he stopped 38 of 39 (97.4%). Who could have predicted that the goaltending would improve?
- This was the first time this season that the Jets didn't trail in the third period.
- This was the first time this season that the Jets didn't have to pull their goalie.
- Counting is hard.
The Jets return to action tomorrow in Colorado! Laine might score then too! He's good.