When: Thursday, April 3, 2014
Time: 7:00 p.m. CST
Where: MTS Centre, Winnipeg, Manitoba
Records: Winnipeg Jets (34-33-10, 12th in the Western Conference), Pittsburgh Penguins (48-23-5, 2nd in the Eastern Conference)
Television/Radio: TSN-JETS, ROOT/ TSN 1290 Radio
On the Horizon: Saturday, April 5th on the road against the Toronto Maple Leafs (6:00 p.m. CST).
Last Game: 2-1 road win (shootout) over the Phoenix Coyotes
Winnipeg Jets: Blake Wheeler (27 goals, 37 assists, 64 points), Bryan Little (22 goals, 40 assists, 62 points), Dustin Byfuglien (20 goals, 35 assists, 55 points), Andrew Ladd (23 goals, 29 assists, 52 points), Olli Jokinen (16 goals, 24 assists, 40 points)
Pittsburgh Penguins: Sidney Crosby (36 goals, 64 assists, 100 points), Evgeni Malkin (23 goals, 49 assists, 72 points), Chris Kunitz (35 goals, 32 assists, 67 points), James Neal (24 goals, 30 assists, 54 points), Jussi Jokinen (18 goals, 34 assists, 52 points)
Game Day Notes:
– Heading into tonight’s game, the Jets sit in 11th place in the Western Conference, seven points behind the Dallas Stars for the 8th and final playoff spot.
– The Jets have five games left, three at home and two on the road. The Jets went 2-2-1 on their five game Southern US road trip, highlighted by wins against San Jose and Phoenix.
– The Penguins lost their last game, 4-1 to the Carolina Hurricanes on Saturday and are 4-5-1 over their last 10 games.
– After Thursday’s pre-game skate, Jets Head Coach Paul Maurice said injured forwards Mark Scheifele and James Wright are progressing and may skate this week.
– Ondrej Pavelec will make his fourth straight start in goal for the Jets. Pavelec stopped 28 of 29 shots in Tuesday’s 2-1 shootout win over Phoenix.
– Pens defenseman Paul Martin will make his return to the Pens line-up tonight, as per Pens Head Coach Dan Bylsma. Martin has not played a game since breaking his hand at the 2014 Sochi Winter Olympics. Martin has missed 18 games since the Olympic Break and 43 games overall this season. He has two goals and 10 assists in 33 games this season.
– Jets forward Devin Setoguchi will be a healthy scratch tonight. It will be the fourth time in the last five games that Setoguchi has been a healthy scratch.
– Paul Martin leads the team in average ice time (24:23/game). Tobias Enstrom leads the Jets in average ice time (23:56/game).
-The Penguins average 10.3 penalty minutes/game which ranks 11th in the NHL. The Jets average 12.1 penalty minutes/game which is 24th in the NHL.
– Who’s Hot: Penguins forward Sidney Crosby has five goals and seven assists in his last nine games. Jets forward Bryan Little has two goals and six assists in his last seven games (seven game point streak).
– Who’s Cold: Olli Jokinen has one assist in his last eight games.
Special Teams Breakdown:
– Pittsburgh has the 2nd Ranked Power Play in the NHL (23.1%) and the 4th Ranked Penalty Kill in the NHL (85.1%)
– Winnipeg has the 24th Ranked Power Play in the NHL (15.8%) and the 10th Ranked Penalty Kill in the NHL (83.5%)
– Ondrej Pavelec (21-25-7, 3.01 GAA, .902 Save Percentage)
– Marc-Andre Fleury (36-18-4, 2.36 GAA, .916 Save Percentage)
Projected Winnipeg Jets Line Combinations:
Andrew Ladd-Bryan Little-Michael Frolik
Dustin Byfuglien- Olli Jokinen-Blake Wheeler
Evander Kane- Eric O’Dell-Matt Halischuk
Eric Tangradi- Jim Slater-Anthony Peluso
Mark Stuart- Jacob Trouba
Tobias Enstrom- Paul Postma
Adam Pardy- Zach Redmond
Healthy Scratches: Devin Setoguchi, Ben Chiarot
Projected Pittsburgh Penguins Line Combinations:
Chris Kunitz-Sidney Crosby- Beau Bennett
Brian Gibbons-Jussi Jokinen- James Neal
Tanner Glass-Brandon Sutter- Lee Stempniak
Taylor Pyatt-Craig Adams- Jayson Megna
Brooks Orpik- Paul Martin
Olli Maatta- Matt Niskanen
Robert Bortuzzo- Rob Scuderi
Healthy Scratches: Deryk Engelland
Pittsburgh Penguins: Pascal Dupuis (knee, out for season), Kris Letang (illness), Evgeni Malkin (foot), Chris Conner (foot), Marcel Goc (foot), Joe Vitale (upper body)
Winnipeg Jets: Grant Clitsome (back, out for season), James Wright (ankle), Mark Scheifele (knee), Chris Thorburn (out indefinitely), Zach Bogosian (upper body, day-to-day), Al Montoya (lower body), Keaton Ellerby (lower body)