As good as the Jets were in the opening period of the game against the Senators on Sunday they had the opposite start in Detroit. They were outshot 16-3 and outscored 2-0. It was an uncharacteristic 20 minutes by Winnipeg where they had about five or six turnovers from within their zone.
The middle frame was a better one for the visiting team. Both teams finished with nine shots. Jets had a 5 on 3 opportunity and managed to get the puck to Patrik Laine who blasted it home to make it a one goal game with assists to Blake Wheeler and Dustin Byfuglien. Tyler Myers took his third penalty of the game (second time for delay of game) and the Jets had to kill off their second 5 on 3 of the game.
The last period gave the Jets an early power play opportunity to tie the game but Jimmy Howard continued his strong play and wouldn’t allow the visitors to get back into the contest. That proved to be big as the Wings made it a 3-1 game on a goal that would be reviewed twice. First for high sticking by the war room in Toronto and then when that was determined to be a good goal, coach Maurice used his challenge suggesting there was goalie interference. The refs determined there was none and it was a 3-1 game. While the Jets tried to claw back into the game a few more breakdowns led to a Darren Helm breakaway goal and then David Booth made it 5-1. The team just couldn’t generate anything and fell for the first time in December.
The Jets are now 17-7-4 on the season. Connor Hellebuyck is 15-3-3 on the season.
For those who would like to take a deeper dive into the advanced stats here are the results from tonight’s game via Natural Stat Trick.
– Bryan Little played in his 700th NHL game
– Patrik Laine scored his 14th goal of season and 50th of his career
– Blake Wheeler picked up his NHL leading 29th assist of the season.
Coach Maurice: Will they carry that game for a bit? What were they better at? On the Wings third goal. On the interpretation of the third goal. Power play opportunities. An off night for Wheeler and Scheifele?
Audio courtesy of TSN 1290 Winnipeg.