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Photo Credit: © Terrence Lee-USA TODAY Sports

JNR: Devils Dance Their Way to Shooutout Win

The Winnipeg Jets fell to the New Jersey Devils in a hard fought battle that went all the way to a shootout. The Devils opened the scoring in the first period and the Jets answered in the second. Nobody scored in the third period or overtime despite multiple crease scrambles and plenty of great chances both ways. In the end, Blackwood made the difference in a shootout as he stopped both Connor and Laine while Hellebuyck allowed two straight goals.

First Period

Honestly, not much was going on during period number one. Both teams got a few early chances, but other than that it was filled with tons of stoppages and very few scoring chances.

The Devils did get the first goal as Taylor Hall made a nice move over the blueline and eventually worked the puck in front of the net. Kulikov failed to tie up his man in front of the net and the Devils went up 1-0.

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One of the good parts of the first period was the penalty kill of Winnipeg. They killed off a few powerplays and didn’t give up too many chances, although they did allow offensive zone entries way too easily.

On the offensive end, the Jets didn’t muster too many opportunities and went into the first intermission down by a goal.

The best summary of period one is as follows:

Second Period

It was more of the same in the second period as both teams struggled to get quality chances. That actually might be a good thing for Winnipeg because that means they are playing decent defense. The Jets had a powerplay of their own in the second period, but it didn’t go anywhere as they struggled to maintain offensive zone pressure. Scheifele and had decent chance and so did Pionk, but nobody was able to find the back of the net.

A little later in the period, the Jets managed to get on the board as Morrissey took a slapper from the point. Copp got a piece of it and sent it the other direction to fool Blackwood and tie the game at one.

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A much tighter game than when these two teams first played, they headed into the second intermission tied at one goal each.

Third Period

With both teams vying for the go ahead goal, things began to pick up in the third period. The Jets and Devils traded a few chances in front of the crease, but the netminders stood tall.

Midway through the third, the scariest moment of the game occurred as Bryan Little took a puck up high. He was circling behind the net as Ehlers let a one-timer go from the point. Little didn’t see the puck and it caught him in the head/neck area. It was a scary scene with Little laying on the ice and the trainer making his way towards him in the corner. It’s the type of play that you never want to see in hockey. Hopefully Little can make his way back to the team as soon as possible.

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The rest of the third happened like the most of the game with a few chances both ways, but nobody putting it in the net. As a result, the game headed to overtime where the Jets are getting pretty familiar.

Overtime

If you wanted chances, overtime had all of them with both teams having odd-man rushes and great looks in the offensive zone. Pionk had an opportunity end it but Blackwood made the save. Moments later it was Scheifele with the game on his stick, but he ripped it off the post and the game kept going.

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Things got tense as overtime expired as the Devils had a powerplay for the last 45 seconds. The Jets managed to kill it off behind a great performance by Hellebuyck and off to a shootout we go!

Shootout

The floodgates opened at one end in the shootout as Connor Hellebuyck let the first two shots get past him. Both Connor and Laine were stopped for Winnipeg and the Jets promptly lost their first game of the homestand.

TL;DR Why the Jets Lost

Shootouts are coinflips at best and the Jets came out on the wrong end of this one. Hellebuyck was great all game but let in two straight in the shootout while the Jets didn’t even manage to slip one past Blackwood.

Jetsnation Top Gun

Connor Hellebuyck is your top gun for this game. Although he didn’t get tested with tons of grade A chances, he was strong all game and gave the Jets a chance to win, especially with his saves in overtime. The Jets didn’t offer much help on the offensive end, but Hellebuyck stood tall and deserves the player of the game honours.

Boxscore

Next Flight

The Jets are able to get some home cooking this week as they stay in the city for another few games. They get two full days off before facing the Canucks on Friday. Puck drop is at 7:00 PM.