Tonight fans of the Winnipeg Jets were transplanted to a land of whimsy and wonder. A universe in which their team scored a season high seven (!) goals en route to an absolute drubbing of the Florida Panthers. Hell, even Chris Thorburn scored tonight. Everything was turning up Winnipeg.
The evening started off auspiciously as moments after a Jets' powerplay had ended, Aaron Gagnon deflected his second in as many games. Moments later the Panthers responded with a TJ Brennan seeing-eye snap shot which knotted the game at one a piece.
Both teams would trade markers once more - tallies from Evander Kane and Tomas Fleischmann - before the Jets would pull away for good, scoring the next five unanswered.
Winnipeg has now won three games in a row and the Jets are officially streaking, while the Florida Panthers continue their slow and painful demise; closing in on the Seth Jones sweepstakes. The Jets will now have the next four days off while the rest of the Eastern Conference catches up in games played before hosting the Tampa Bay Lightning.
- Holy Hannah, goal scoring! After struggling mightily through their five game losing streak, the Jets have exploded over the past three games, scoring fifteen goals. As mentioned earlier, Winnipeg scored a season high seven goals tonight.
- Unfortunately, Winnipeg received no help in the standings as the Washington Capitals, Ottawa Senators and New York Islanders all earned wins tonight. The Jets are now tied for eight place with the New York Islanders, though they still have two games in hand.
- If no Jets' player can score a hat trick in a seven goal output, then they're likely doomed to never achieve the feat. Evander Kane came close again, scoring his team-leading sixteenth goal of the season.
- Though they were far from perfect, at least Winnipeg's power play was effective tonight, scoring their first in over twenty attempts.
- Despite a shaky start, Ondrej Pavelec played a solid game, finishing with a SV% of .926. The Czech netminder has been en fuego lately, so here's hoping he keeps it up.
- The same can not be said for Jacob Markstrom, who was yanked after allowing six goals on twenty-three shots. Yeesh.
- You might not see it right now, but Nick Bjugstad has all the tools to be a high-caliber NHL player. He and Jonathan Huberdeau will be tasked with raising this team to the next level.
- Bryan Little is a deceptively good hockey player. Sure, he doesn't score all that frequently, but his primary assists on goals by Andrew Ladd and Grant Clitsome were things of beauty.
- Chris Thorburn scored the seventh goal tonight which improved the "Thorburn rule" (Thorburn scores, Jets win) success rate yet again.
- After suffering what appeared to be an excruciatingly painful leg injury, Shawn Matthias returned to play ten shifts in the third period of a 6-2 game. Dude is a warrior.
- BONUS: Shock of all shocks, Eric Gudbranson was handed his second match penalty in under a week for a hit he delivered to Bryan Little. His last ejection came in the first period of last Saturday's 4-3 loss to the Capitals for a hit on Martin Erat who left with a lower-body injury and hasn't played since.