Jets shine in dominant 5-1 win over Stars
WINNIPEG -- Andrew Harris toted the Grey Cup to centre ice, joining fellow Blue Bombers Nic Demski and Chris Streveler for a ceremonial puckdrop ahead of the third meeting of the season between the Winnipeg Jets and Dallas Stars.
The crowd at Bell MTS Place loved it. They were raucous, and that energy carried into the Jets' dominating 5-1 perforamance against the Stars, according to head coach Paul Maurice.
"That stuff, the crowd in this building plays a huge advantage to us," he said following the game. "They were wired, and rightfully so, and appreciative of it. So I do think it mattered."
Patrik Laine put a pair of pucks passed Dallas netminder Anton Khudobin, though only one of them counted. His goal just seconds into the game was called back, after a Stars' challenge and review revealed the play was offside.
With 31 seconds remaining in the second frame, Laine took a feed from Mark Scheifele and beat Khudobin again, with no offside in sight.
"Yeah, I think that was the least I could do, after the dumb penalty I took on the powerplay," he said, referring to a cross-checking minor that put an end to a Jets' man advantage just a few minutes earlier.
"So that was kind of a makeup goal, that was something I needed to do. (Kyle Connor and Mark Scheifele) made a great play, and I was all by myself and just tried to use by bad hands, and it went in tonight."
Laine, Scheifele, and Connor combined for seven points in the game (three goals and four assists), while Nikolaj Ehlers and Josh Morrissey added tallies.
The Jets have now limited the opposition to fewer than three goals in nine of their last 15 games, and their 2.75 goals against per game is the sixth fewest in the league.
"I think we were quick on pucks, defencemen did a really good job getting back, and our second man quick in the defensive zone allowed us to break a lot of pucks out," said captain Blake Wheeler of his team's effort. "A lot of really good sticks in the defensive zone, so they didn't have a whole lot of established offensive zone time. I think working from our defensive zone out, we were really solid, and gave ourselves a chance to create some offensively and made some plays."
The Jets will aim for a home-and-home sweep of the Stars on Thursday night in Dallas.