WINNIPEG — It may have taken a visit to MTS Centre by the NHL’s only winless club, but it was just what the doctor ordered for the goal-starved Winnipeg Jets, clipping the Carolina Hurricanes 3-1 to end their four-game losing streak in front of a sellout 15,016 in attendance Tuesday night.
The Jets scored two quick ones in the game’s opening three minutes — just 40 seconds apart — to put the ‘Canes on their heels and capture their first home-ice victory of the season. A quick start and multiple goals — just what was prescribed for a team that had scored only twice in their previous four games and whom widely spoke this week of dampened bench energy when facing adversity or immediately following opposing goals.
“It was a good bench tonight. It was as good a bench as I’ve seen in a long, long time,” said Jets head coach Paul Maurice. “And it was under pressure. There’s pressure here, and certainly we all felt it going into the game.”
WINNIPEG — It only took seven minutes for the Calgary Flames to do the damage they needed to hand the struggling Winnipeg Jets a 4-1 loss — their fourth-consecutive — in front of a sold-out 15,016 at MTS Centre Sunday night.
In a span of just 6:42 in the second period, the Flames found the back of the net via Dennis Wideman, Johnny Gaudreau, and Mason Raymond to go up 3-1 and conclude their six-game, 11-day road drip on a high note. Raymond added two assists to complete his impressive outing.
WINNIPEG — The Winnipeg Jets ran into one of the best goaltenders on Earth Friday night as they opened their regular season home schedule with a 2-0 loss at the hands of Pekka Rinne and the Nashville Predators.
Rinne’s 31 saves earned the perennial all-star his first shutout of the season while clogging up Winnipeg’s opportunity to snap a two-game slide and a serious scoring drought after opening their season with a 6-2 win in Glendale over the Arizona Coyotes. With just one goal scored in their subsequent losses in San Jose and Los Angeles, the 1-3-0 Jets have now gone nine periods with just the one marker for.
It begs the question; why has the offence dried up after a six-goal splurge to start the season eight days ago?
WINNIPEG — Three key pieces to the Winnipeg Jets’ puzzle each lit the lamp in the club’s pre-season finale Saturday night to douse the Calgary Flames 4-1 at MTS Centre.
“I think we simplified things and created some scoring chances,” said Evander Kane, whose quick give-and-go with newly-anointed linemate Mark Scheifele early in the third added the insurance to Jacob Trouba‘s game-winning point blast 4:30 into the second period. “We talked about it and we just wanted to simplify it and have more of a shoot-first mentality, especially at the start of the game and other things would open up as the game went on — that’s what happened.”
Calgary struck first midway through the opening frame as David Jones picked defenceman Grant Clitsome‘s pocket and caught a sleepy Ondrej Pavelec away from his post, making it 1-0 on an easy bury into the open cage.
WINNIPEG — The Winnipeg Jets got a little from their young guns and a little from their old hats on Tuesday night in front of 14,560 fans at MTS Centre, as they ended a three-game losing skid to win a pre-season bout over the Ottawa Senators, 2-1.
For Winnipeg, the game-winner was provided by 18-year-old Nik Ehlers, who got his first pre-season goal at 6:22 in the second period, on the receiving end of a beautiful cycle from fellow young guns Matt Halischuk and Nicolas Petan.
“It felt pretty good. I got the puck, put it in, and I had no idea how to celebrate,” said Ehlers. “I was just standing there and I was happy to score. It was amazing.”
“Those (young players) put so much stock in their offence. Most of them post huge numbers heading in, so that’s how they view themselves as hockey players,” said Jets head coach Paul Maurice.
WINNIPEG — The Edmonton Oilers scored three goals in the final ten minutes of the second period to quickly erase an early Winnipeg lead to hand the Jets a 3-2 loss — their first of the preseason — in front of 14, 723 on Wednesday night at MTS Centre.
Sprung by a long stretch pass from Jets defenceman Will O’Neill late in the first, free agent acquisition TJ Galiardi walked in and buried it high past Oilers goaltending prospect Laurent Brossoit to make it 1-0.
“It was a great pass,” said Galiardi of his breakaway feed. “I came off the bench late and we made some nice eye contact there for a second and I was happy he got it to me. It was a pretty good ‘sauce’ so I was lucky I batted it down.”
WINNIPEG — The Winnipeg Jets got their fourth season back in the Manitoba capital rolling Monday night with a 2-1 pre-season win over the Minnesota Wild in front of a somewhat spotty MTS Centre crowd.
As will likely be the case in all six of Winnipeg’s remaining exhibition games before the regular season begins on October 9 in Arizona, Monday’s matchup against a rookie-laden Wild roster was a chance to get a look at some of their own prospects working to make the big club, including Adam Lowry, Josh Morrissey, Nic Petan, Brendan Kitchton, and 2014 first-round draft pick Nik Ehlers.
“I had butterflies when I went on the ice,” said Ehlers of his first game in the pros. “When the crowd went crazy out there it was amazing. I think the game went pretty well. It’s the NHL — it’s different.”
The Winnipeg Jets are back in town and ready to hit the ice.
After a relaxing and fun-filled summer vacation for the team (if social media is any indication), the Jets will get back to the grind when training camp opens on Thursday.
The Jets will begin with medicals and physicals at MTS Centre before splitting their time between the arena and MTS Iceplex for on-ice sessions. Training sessions at the Iceplex are the only time when the public is allowed to observe from the stands.
Winnipeg will kick off the pre-season against the Minnesota Wild on Monday September 22 at MTS Centre at 7 p.m. CT.
With the countdown to the 2014-15 NHL season ticking away, the Winnipeg Jets want to get fans ready with an inaugural Fan Fest.
The hockey club will host the outdoor event on Saturday, September 20 at MTS Iceplex.
The event includes access to Jets training camp sessions, live player and management interviews as well as a range of interactive games and activities. The first 5,000 fans on site will receive a free complimentary lunch.
In addition, the first 3,000 fans will have the opportunity to watch one of four Winnipeg Jets training camp sessions beginning at 9 a.m. with additional ice times commencing at 9:50 a.m., 12:00 p.m. and 12:50 p.m. Admission to these sessions is limited to available seating on a first-come, first-served basis. Fans that do not get into one session will be able to line up for the ensuing one.