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Preview: Winnipeg Jets at Minnesota Wild

Winnipeg can eliminate the Wild tonight in St. Paul.

NHL: Minnesota Wild at Winnipeg Jets
Winnipeg Jets forward Patrik Laine (29) skates with the puck in front of Minnesota Wild defenseman Greg Pateryn (29) during the second period at Bell MTS Place.
Terrence Lee-USA TODAY Sports

Where to watch/listen

Broadcast Schedule
Broadcast Schedule
Time: 7:00 P.M. CDT
Radio: TSN1290, KFAN 100.3

The Winnipeg Jets will look for their second win in as many nights, while the Minnesota Wild hope to keep their slim playoff hopes alive when these two teams square off in a Central Division rivalry game.

This will be the fifth and final meeting between these two clubs during the 2018-19 NHL regular season, with the Wild emerging as the victors in all four previous contest, with the Jets not even getting so much as a loser point for getting to overtime.

The Wild won by scores of 4-2, 3-1, 3-2 and 3-2. Connor Hellebuyck was the Jets’ goalie in all four games, though he may not play tonight, having gone to overtime last night in Chicago. Laurent Brossoit (and Josh Morrissey for that matter) is unlikely to be rushed back prior to the end of the regular season, so there’s a strong chance Eric Comrie starts tonight.

The Jets are 6-3-0 in the second half of back-to-backs this year (2-0-0 when the game the night before went to overtime). So they can play well on short rest.

Blake Wheeler remains tied for the single-season franchise record for assists with Marc Savard, who also picked up 69 helpers in 2005-06. Wheeler appeared to have his 70th assist last night, but it was erased after a coach’s challenge.

Tale of the Tape

Winnipeg Jets Stats San Jose Sharks
Winnipeg Jets Stats San Jose Sharks
1-0-0 Series 0-1-0
14-9-1 Record 13-11-1
29 Points 27
3rd Central Division 4th Pacific
5th West Conference 8th West
4-1-0 Last 5 4-1-0
68 Goals For 73
73 Goals Against 83
Regular Season
Nikolaj Ehlers (11) Goals Evander Kane (12)
Patrik Laine, Mark Scheifele (14) Assists Logan Couture (20)
Scheifele (22) Points Couture (25)
Connor Hellebuyck (11) Wins Martin Jones (10)
Hellebuyck (2.42) Goals Against Average Jones (3.18)
Hellebuyck (.928) Save Percentage Aaron Dell (.897)
15.5 (24th) Power Play % 19.5 (14th)
72.2 (29th) Penalty Kill % 91.4 (1st)

Enemy Territory

Minnesota Wild Coverage: Hockey Wilderness

Last Jets Game:

Winnipeg Jets 4-3 (OT) Chicago Blackhawks

Despite another blown lead late in the third period, the Jets managed to emerge victorious in this one, as Kevin Hayes went 1-on-2 with the Blackhawks, and managed to beat everyone, including the goalie, to score the winner.

Last Wild Game:

Minnesota Wild 0-4 Arizona Coyotes

Hard to win games if you don’t score any goals. Darcy Kuemper stopped all 39-shots he faced, and kept Arizona within striking distance of the final wildcard spot.

Players to watch:

Winnipeg Jets

NHL: Winnipeg Jets at Montreal Canadiens Eric Bolte-USA TODAY Sports

With a combined two goals and one assist in their last seven games, the dynamic duo of Mark Scheifele and Blake Wheeler appear out of gas or out of ideas, as seasons that once seemed destined for the 100-point mark have seen those hopes all but dashed.

Wheeler and Scheifele are each averaging career highs in minutes played per game, and it appears to be taking its toll. Can they break out of the funk before the playoffs?

Minnesota Wild

NHL: Minnesota Wild at Carolina Hurricanes James Guillory-USA TODAY Sports

Most players don’t have their best seasons after the age of 30, but most players aren’t Ryan Suter. This season may not be his best, but with 46 points in 79 game played, he has equaled his third best point production, behind only the pair of 51 point seasons he had (2017-18 and 2015-16). With offensive production hard to find for the Wild this year, Suter continually gets the job done.