The Jets will be looking to
create between themselves and the teams fighting for a playoff spot in the
Central Division when they head south to Dallas to take on the Stars.
Winnipeg (22-14-8) got back
into the win column Tuesday night, defeating the Florida Panthers 8-2 for their
tenth win of the season at the MTS. In the month of January the Jets are 3-2-1,
and currently sit fourth in the Central Division and hold the first wildcard
spot in the Western Conference.
Dallas (19-16-7) currently sits
fifth in the Central Division, seven points back of the Jets with two games in
hand. The Stars are 5-3-2 in their last ten games and are looking to build off
their 5-4 victory against the Ottawa Senators Tuesday night.
Tonight will be the second of
four matches between the Jets and Stars, Winnipeg won the last meeting between
the two teams 5-2 back in December.
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Mathieu Perreault enjoyed a
breakout game Tuesday night against the Panthers, scoring four goals on seven
shots, and just over 17 minutes of ice-time. The 27-year-old now has nine
points (6g, 3a) in the month of January, and is currently riding a four-game
Perreault’s line mates, Mark
Scheifele and Michael Frolik each had a pair of assists in that game as well.
This line will look to build off their successful game against Florida and ride
the wave right into Dallas.
Jets rookie winger, Adam Lowry
had his first and only career multi-goal game against Dallas back in December.
Can lightning strike twice in the same place for the young NHLer?
Pavalec gets the start between the pipes in the first of
back-to-back games for the Jets tonight. I wouldn’t be surprised if we see
Hutchinson in the cage for tomorrow night’s game.
Pavalec has been on a bit of a slide over the past 30 days, losing
four straight games, two in regulation and two in overtime, while giving up
four goals in each of those losses. Pavelec hasn’t won a game for the Jets
since Dec. 16, when he gave up just a single goal to the Buffalo Sabres.
Good news for the Jets defence, as Jacob Trouba was seen
practicing with the team in today’s morning skate, there is still no idea when
he’ll be back in the line up. But I would assume sooner than later. What does
that mean for the rest of the defence? We’ll just have to wait and see.
We all know the kind of damage Dallas’ top line can do, between
Benn, Seguin and Ritchie, the line has a combined point total of 88 points
(41g, 47a) this season. That’s a lot of firepower.
The line I do want to talk about is their second line, Jason
Spezza and Ales Hemsky enjoyed some immediate chemistry when Hemsky was traded
to the Ottawa Senators late last season. Then Hemsky signed in Dallas as a free
agent and the Stars traded for Spezza. At the start of the season Hemsky and
Spezza struggled to build off of last season’s success, but the chemistry has
seemed to reemerge as of late.
In the last eight games Hemsky has seven points (5g, 2a) and
Spezza has four points (1g, 3a). Through in a healthy Eric Cole with 9 points
(4g, 5a) in his last eight, and that is a second line to be wary of.
John Klingberg, the younger brother of Jet’s prospect Carl
Klingberg has been a pleasant surprise on Dallas’ defence this season, putting
up 15 points in 28 games so far and playing between 17-25 minutes per game in
every game but one this season.
The defence pairing that interests me most though is the pairing
of Trevor Daley and Jamie Oleksiak. Oleksiak is a giant presence on the ice
standing at a towering 6’7, weighing in at 250 pounds. Playing alongside Daley,
who is on pace for a career year, will be beneficial to the young giant on the
Game Day Prediction: Jets continue to succeed this season on the road, handing
Dallas a 5-3 loss to build off their wildcard lead.
Obvious Prediction: I’m going to say that Benn and Seguin combine for four points
tonight, anytime they don’t get multi-points is a bit of an anomaly.
Not So Obvious
Prediction: Winnipeg’s third line leads the
offensive charge for the Jets, contributing three of Winnipeg’s five goals