Before Saturday night’s recreation in Ottawa, Winnipeg Jets coach Rick Bowness challenged his best gamers to step up.
In two straight losses last week, the Jets scored solely two goals — each by Kyle Connor — and Bowness needed more at both ends of the rink from his huge guns.
And he undoubtedly obtained what he was after,
Saturday evening, the Jets what could have been a three-game dropping streak by drilling the Ottawa Senators 5-1 at Canadian Tire Centre in Kanata, Ont.
And who did the damage? The massive weapons. Mark Scheifele had two targets and an assist, Blake Wheeler and Nikolaj Ehlers every had a aim and two assists and Cole Perfetti broke out of a chronic stoop to attain his seventh of the season because the Jets led early and did not decelerate for a single shift.
And during this large performance by the Jets, two milestones have been reached. Wheeler picked up his 900th career NHL level and Ehlers grew to become the all-time leading Danish-born points getter in NHL historical past.
“We challenged them this morning as a end result of we would have liked somewhat bit extra out of them,” Bowness told reporters in Ottawa. Obviously, they responded.”
Indeed they did.
Ehlers opened the scoring at 6:58 of the primary period with a power play goal from Josh Morrissey and Scheifele. however Ottawa tied it at 11:12 on a goal by Josh Norris.
Bit that’s the final anybody heard of the Senators.
Scheifele scored his 27th of the season on the five minute mark of the second period to make it 2-1 (Kyle Connor and Nate Schmidt picked up the assists) after which Wheeler found himself proper on the doorstep and beat Ottawa’s Anton Forsberg at 13:09 to place it away. It was Wheeler’s 12th of the season from Ehlers and Neal Pionk.
In the third interval, Scheifele scored his 28th at 16:08 from Axel Johnsson-Fjallby and Wheeler to make it 4-1 and then Perfetti rounded out the scoring at 18:17 on the ability play from Ehlers and Wheeler.
After 4-1 losses in Montreal and Toronto to begin this five-game highway trip, this was a perfect bounce back effort. With the win, the Jets improved to 30-16-1, just two factors behind Dallas in the race for first within the Central Division. The Jets also turned the primary group in the West to win 30 video games this season and they did it in their 47th game. Amazingly, the Jets didn’t win their 30th recreation final yr till March 22, 2022 (their 64th game/30-24-10) when they beat Vegas 4-0.
After the sport, Scheifele mirrored on how the Jets turned everything round and play an almost good street sport.
“No staff desires to play of their D-zone for a long time frame and we had a quantity of shifts where it felt like a minute, two minutes, of sustained pressure on them,” mentioned Scheifele. “And we had been rolling guys off the bench. It wasn’t only one line. Everyone was concerned.”
The Jets outshot Ottawa 30-26 however gained solely 48 p.c of the face-offs. They were additionally outhit 28-14. However, they went two-for-eight on the facility play while Ottawa was zero-for-four because the Jets now have the second-best penalty killing unit within the NHL at 84.9 per cent. Only Boston is best.
The Jets power play is now seventh in the NHL at 24.7 per cent. What a huge improvement in each areas from the days of Paul Maurice.
The Jets proceed this five-game street trip (now 1-2-0) in Philadelphia on Sunday night time. The second recreation of this back-to-back goes at 6 p.m. CST on TSN3.