The Jets were back in Edmonton 139 days after they last played an NHL game for tonight’s only exhibition game ahead of the play-in series which get underway this weekend. It was readily apparent that Connor Hellebuyck hasn’t missed a beat despite the time off as the Jets Vezina caliber goalie was perfect for Winnipeg. This was the 11th straight win for the Jets over the Canucks.
For those who would like to take a deeper dive into the advanced stats here are the results from the game via Natural Stat Trick.
Paul Maurice chose to keep just 12 forwards and six defenceman on the bench for the game despite the fact that they were entitled to have an extra forward and extra defenceman.
Tucker Poolman would score first to open the scoring in the 1st;
Highlight of 1st period was this hit by Nathan Beaulieu;
That’s a big boy hit by a healthy Nathan Beaulieu. pic.twitter.com/VzGAqvN8hB
— Dave Minuk (@ICdave) July 30, 2020
Nikolaj Ehlers didn’t break his playoff scoring drought but he did bury one tnt;
Dmitry Kulikov looking like a goal scorer made it 3-0 after a nice pass by Jack Roslovic;
In the 3rd Nikolaj Ehlers left the game with just over 10 minutes to go in the final frame and onto the bench popped Jansen Harkins.
Turns out the Jets had Harkins and Luca Sbisa dressed but not on the bench.
Blake Wheeler would add an empty net goal to seal the deal.
Coach Paul Maurice indicated that Nikolaj Ehlers, who left the game midway through the 3rd period, was a move that was “100% precautionary” and that he expects the dynamic Jets forward to be back as a full participant in practice on Friday.
Blake Wheeler and Connor Hellebuyck
Coach Maurice: What did he like about tonight and was it a good tune up for the play-in series? Did he leave it up to Hellebuyck whether he wanted to play the full game? What was it like coaching in an empty arena? Was there any significance for the goal for Nikolaj Ehlers and is there a status update? What becomes the focus on Friday as they get ready for game one? What did he see from the Poolman and Beaulieu pairing? The aggressiveness of his team. What did he see from Jack Roslovic and what can his finishing ability do for that line?
The Jets are taking tomorrow off and will be back on the ice on Friday. Next up from a game perspective is the Flames on Saturday in game 1 of the play-in series. We will have plenty more to come so begin your day with the morning papers tomorrow on site at 7 AM.