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Photo Credit: © Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

JNGD.S8.G40 Recap: When You Get More Injuries Than Goals…

It was a night of strange goals with two pucks deflecting off of players and into the net, then later a Toronto reviewed an amazing save by Connor Hellebuyck. Perhaps this match was doomed from the start as the Jets have not won a game in PPG Paint Arena in seventeen games. In fact the last time the franchise was able to pull that off was in 2007 when they were still the Atlanta Thrashers.  Tonight, Matt Murray earned his doughnut after  a 4-0 shutout against Winnipeg.

FIRST PERIOD

Early in the period Ehlers collides with Sidney Crosby and heads to the bench for a moment, then makes his way to the locker room. Not great! In the meantime, Copp and Connor slot in for Ehlers who does eventually come back out for a shift, only to promptly return to the locker room. We are updated later that he will not return to the game.

Still scoreless with 5 minutes left in the first, Winnipeg takes a bench minor for too many men. This leads to a Pittsburgh goal when Olli Maatta’s shot deflects off of Blake Wheeler and into the net. To make matters worse just 33 seconds later, a puck also bounces off of Matt Cullen and into the net making it 2-0 for the Penguins.

 

 

SECOND PERIOD

The second period starts off with a bit of back and forth until the Jets go on the power play at 13:22 thanks to Derick Brassard who gets caught holding Brandon Tanev. The power play saw no shots on goal for the Jets, while the Penguins yielded one.

Unwilling to let the series of unfortunate goals end with the first period, Dominik Simon backhands a puck at Connor Hellebuyck who makes a beautiful glove save. The refs determine on the ice that it was not a goal. Toronto disagrees and decides that Hellebuyck’s glove crosses the line puck in hand.

The Jets finish the period with 11 shots on goal versus Pittsburgh’s 15. Winnipeg leads in 5v5 shot attempts 37-33 but shot attempts still aren’t goals and Winnipeg is down 3-0.

THIRD PERIOD

More of the same lackluster play in the third period, but we make it most of the way through the 3rd with a few shot attempts back and forth. The Jets take a penalty after Blake Wheeler gets caught hooking but the Penguins fail to capitalize on that. The Jets get their 3rd unsuccessful short handed shot on net, but remain scoreless.

At 5 minutes remaining, the Jets trade their tendy for a skater with lofty dreams that this move would pan out. Here’s where we see the 4th goal scored for the Penguins by Kris Letang, extending his point streak to 6 games.

If the four goals and an injured Ehlers wasn’t enough, the Jets suffer another injury after Kulikov blocks a shot then heads straight to the locker room with two minutes left.

The Jets’ inability to win in regulation at PPG Paints Arena continues.

 

THE BOXSCORE

PLAYERS OF THE GAME

For Pittsburgh: Matt Murray – Stopped 33 shots on goal tonight and earned himself a shutout.

For Winnipeg: Connor Hellebuyck Despite the 4 goal tally from the Penguins, two goals were very odd deflections, his save on the 3rd was still tight (if only a millimeter over the line) and an empty netter. There are a few components that share the blame for this loss, but goal tending wasn’t one of them.