Like there was ever a doubt the kid wouldn’t come through in his home country!
Patrik Laine – who had been shuffled around the Jets lineup as Paul Maurice tried to help get him and his offense going – had his best game of the season in front of friends and family in Finland Thursday afternoon (well, evening in Helsinki) as he helped lead the Jets to a 4-2 win over the Florida Panthers.
In case you missed it, or just want to re-watch over and over again, here were all three goals that helped double his season total from three to six.
The Jets first power play of the game didn’t come until late in the second period and it was obvious right away that the jets were focused on setting up the home town boy which they did without fail seconds into the man advantage. It turned out to also be a record setting goal as it was the Jets ninth game in a row with a power play goal, setting a franchise record.
The Panthers got into more penalty trouble early in the third as a Mike Hoffman trip and a too many men call set them back by a pair of players and gave Laine all the room he needed to unleash his cannon of a shot.
A truly underrated part of the play though is the hop Dustin Byfuglien makes at the blueline to keep the puck in the Panthers zone. He then gives to Blake Wheeler who then finds Laine in a passing / shooting combination we’ve seen so many times already. Wheeler had three assists on the game, all of them on Patrik Laine goals.
Who says empty net goals are boring?
The Laine shot from long distance of course gets the glory, but Wheeler dishing off to Mark Scheifele who then does a real nifty behind the back pass to find a more open Laine (who is also pointed in the right direction) makes for a nice set up.
The Jets and Laine will be back on the ice again tomorrow against the Panthers for game two of the two game set in Finland. We now get to wait a little under 24 hours to see what the kid will do for an encore!