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Game Two Preview: Winnipeg Jets vs Minnesota Wild

Fifteen wins until the Cup. Getting closer!

NHL: Stanley Cup Playoffs-Minnesota Wild at Winnipeg Jets James Carey Lauder-USA TODAY Sports

Where to watch/listen

Broadcast Schedule
Broadcast Schedule
Time: 6:30 P.M. CDT
Radio: TSN1290

Game One of the Central Division quarterfinal series between the Winnipeg Jets and the Minnesota Wild was a bit of an emotional roller coaster, to say the least.

The excitement of pre-game carried into the first period. But after twenty, things were still tied and a nervous energy set in.

Would this be just like the Anaheim series in 2015 all over again? it would not. After taking the lead, losing the lead, and taking the lead again, the Jets prevailed, while dominating in shots, faceoffs and hits.

If the Jets can keep that production up tonight, capitalize on a few more of those shots, and Connor Hellebuyck has a better save percentage than .900, the Jets should win easily.

Of course, there’s no such thing as easy in the Stanley Cup Playoffs. Ask the Philadelphia Flyers that.

The biggest question for the Jets headed into game two is the health of Mathieu Perreault. Both he and Toby Enstrom are game-time decisions, and I have doubts either of them play. Toby is probably more likely than Matty P at this point.

The biggest question for the Wild headed into this game is how to ignite their offence. Eric Staal’s line was all but invisible, as it was negated by the work of the top line and the Jacob Trouba and Josh Morrissey pairing.

Tale of the Tape

Winnipeg Jets Stats Minnesota Wild
Winnipeg Jets Stats Minnesota Wild
1-0 Series 0-1
52-20-10 Record 45-26-11
114 Points 101
2nd Central Division 3rd Central
2nd West Conference 4th West
5-0-0 Last 5 2-2-1
277 Goals For 253
218 Goals Against 232
Regular Season
Patrik Laine (44) Goals Eric Staal (42)
Blake Wheeler (68) Assists Mikael Granlund (46)
Wheeler (91) Points Staal (76)
Connor Hellebuyck (44) Wins Devan Dubnyk (35)
Hellebuyck (2.36) Goals Against Average Dubnyk (2.52)
Hellebuyck (.924) Save Percentage Dubnyk (.918)
23.4 (5th) Power Play % 20.4 (18th)
81.8 (9th) Penalty Kill % 81.2 (13th)
Mark Scheifele, Patrik Laine, Joe Morrow (1) Goals Matt Cullen, Zach Parise (1)
Blake Wheeler, Dustin Byfuglien, Paul Stastny, Nikolaj Ehlers (1) Assists Mikael Granlund, Jordan Greenway, Nate Prosser, Mikku Koivu (1)
Seven Players (1) Points Five Players (1)
Connor Hellebuyck (1) Wins Devan Dubnyk (0)
Hellebuyck (2.03) Goals Against Average Dubnyk (3.10)
Hellebuyck (.900) Save Percentage Dubnyk (.925)
50.0 (3rd) Power Play % 0.0 (13th)
100.0 (5th) Penalty Kill % 50.0 (14th)
3-1-0 Season record between 1-3-0
18-16-1-2 Overall record (W-L-T-OTL/SOL) 18-14-1-4

Enemy Territory

Minnesota Wild Coverage: Hockey Wilderness

Last Game:

Winnipeg Jets 3-2 Minnesota Wild

Joe Morrow netted the game-winning goal, which is more than the guy he was traded for has done in his NHL career. Of course, that guy doesn’t even know he was traded for him yet, but that’s beside the point.

Players to watch:

Winnipeg Jets

NHL: Winnipeg Jets at Toronto Maple Leafs John E. Sokolowski-USA TODAY Sports

Connor Hellebuyck had a stellar regular seaso that quite likely will see him as a finalist for the Vezina trophy. While his save percentage was only .900 in game one, that came as a result of two goals that weren’t his fault on just 20 shots against. If he plays anywhere near as good as his .924 save percentage this year, this series will likely end quickly.

Minnesota Wild

NHL: Edmonton Oilers at Minnesota Wild Marilyn Indahl-USA TODAY Sports

Devan Dubnyk was the best player on the ice for the Wild in game one, and while he doesn’t always have to be the best, his level of play is going to have to remain solid if the Wild are to have any chance. His defence cannot allow 40 shots a night if he is to sustain his play over the course of a series.