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The N*if*HL: Jets Help Themselves And Toronto With Big Win Over Florida

Hello and welcome to the N*if*HL! Since the real thing has been “paused” we’re running daily (well, almost daily) simulations on EA’s NHL20 video game of the NHL schedule as it would have played out through March and into April and the Stanley Cup playoffs with a particular focus on the Winnipeg Jets (this is a Jets fan site after all). You can read the full intro to our “what if” league here and feel free to share this with hockey fans all around.)


Home is where the heart is and it’s also where the Winnipeg Jets got back in the win column as they opened up a three goal lead and then hung on for a closer-than-needed 4-3 victory against a very game Florida Panthers club that is in the middle of their own playoff battle with the Toronto Maple Leafs.

Mathieu Perreault returned to the lineup which meant taking out Jansen Harkins, all the other lines remained unchanged from the Vancouver contest

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Going into the contest, the Jets found themselves in a very tight battle for a coveted Wild Card spot, but also within reach of a struggling Dallas Stars team that was hanging on to third place in the Central. The Panthers meanwhile were holding on to third place in the Atlantic as the Maple Leafs have had struggles of their own. The first period very much played out like two teams not wanting to make a big mistake early, but Mason Appleton opened up the scoring, continuing his recent hot streak as he scored the only goal of the first period to put the Jets up 1-0.

Lots of fireworks in the second period as Winnipeg came out firing early on and got two quick goals past Sergei Bobrovsky and it looked like the Jets were about to run away with this one.

But a little over a minute after Kyle Connor scored his 40th of the season and Nikolaj Ehlers made it 3-0, the Panthers found the back of the net as well as Frank Vatrano scored the first of his two goals on the night.

After that brief flurry of goal scoring both teams settled in to more defensive minded hockey for the rest of the second and again the Jets did well to limit Florida scoring chances by keeping everything to the outside of their zone and making sure Connor Hellebuyck had clean looks at seven other shots he faced in that period.

The third period was led off by a Mathieu Perreauly power-play goal that put the Jets up 4-1 and seemingly on the path to an easy win on the night.

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The Jets maybe let their foot off the pedal a little too much however and the Panthers took advantage with a couple of goals to make it a one goal game with over seven minutes left to go.

In the end though, Florida was caught being a little too aggressive in trying to tie things up as a couple of penalties in the last five minutes of the game prevented them from any solid chance at salvaging a point out of the game.

The Jets hang on, get back to within two points of the Dallas Stars for third in the Central and help out the Leafs as well by keeping the Panthers only two points ahead of Toronto in that divisional race.

 

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Florida Panthers – 3
Winnipeg Jets – 4

FIRST PERIOD

Scoring
WPG – 8:18 – Mason Appleton (7) – Assists: Nick Shore (4), Cody Eakin (5)

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Penalties
None

Shots
FLA: 8 – WPG: 9

SECOND PERIOD

Scoring
WPG – 2:38 – Kyle Connor (40) – Assists: Mark Scheifele (46), Neal Pionk (42)
WPG – 4:09 – Nikolaj Ehlers (26) – Assists: Patrik Laine (37), Andrew Copp (17)
FLA – 5:25 – Frank Vatrano – Assists: Lucas Wallmark, Brett Connolly

Penalties
None

Shots
FLA: 8 (16) – WPG: 10 (19)

THIRD PERIOD

Scoring
WPG – 4:04 – Matthew Perreault (PPG) (8) – Assists: Patrik Laine (38), Nikolaj Ehlers (35)
FLA – 6:15 – Frank Vatrano – Assists: Brett Connolly, Arron Ekblad
FLA – 12:35 – Jonathan Huberdeau – Assist: Anton Stralman

Penalties
FLA – 3:04 – Evgenii Dadonov (Tripping)
FLA – 15:53 – Mike Hoffman (Hooking)
FLA – 19:19 – Mackenzie Weegar (Tripping)

Shots
FLA: 14 (30) – WPG: 9 (28)

GOALIES

W – Connor Hellebuyck (27 of 30)
L – Sergei Bobrovsky (24 of 28)

THREE STARS

1st – Frank Vatrano
2nd – Nikolaj Ehlers
3rd – Patrik Laine

OTHER GAME STATS

Hits
FLA: 16 – WPG: 12

Time on attack
FLA: 8:55 – WPG: 7:45

Faceoffs
FLA: 16 – WPG: 14

Powerplay
FLA: 0/0 – WPG: 1/3


 

The Scoreboard

(For March 17, 2020)

New Jersey Devils

3

1st: K. Palmieri (N. Gusev) (16:38)
2nd: No Scoring
3rd: M. Mueller (Unassisted) (7:49) | J. Bratt (P. Zacha, M. Wood) (17:02)

Toronto Maple Leafs 

2

1st: No Scoring
2nd: J. Tavares (D. Malgin) (3:29)
3rd: M. Marner (W. Nylander, T. Barrie) (11:31) (PPG)

Calgary Flames

3

1st: No Scoring
2nd: J. Gaudreau (M. Backlund, E. Lindholm) (2:42)
3rd: M. Tkachuk (Unassisted) (0:53) | D. Dube (M. Lucic, N. Hanifin) (8:49)

New York Islanders

5

1st: J. Bailey (J. Pageau) (6:12) | D. Brassard (B. Nelson, A. Beauvillier) (9:11)
2nd: M. Barzal (D. Toews, B. Nelson) (9:11) (PPG) | A. Lee (B. Nelson) (17:07)
3rd: R. Pulock (A. Greene) (19:42) (ENG)

St. Louis Blues

2

1st: R. Thomas (A. Pietrangelo) (14:29)
2nd: S. Blais (Unassisted) (8:19)
3rd: No Scoring

Philadelphia Flyers

4

1st: S. Laughton (K. Hayes, T. Konecny) (8:13) | K. Hayes (I. Provorov) (19:28)
2nd: M. Raffl (N. Thompson, M. Niskanen) (8:35)
3rd: S. Couturier (J. Votacek, I. Provorov) (4:50) (PPG)

Buffalo Sabres

1

1st: No Scoring
2nd: J. Eichel (S. Reinhart, J. Vessey) (1:46)
3rd: No Scoring

Carolina Hurricanes

6

1st: S. Aho (T. Teravainen, V. Trocheck) (1:18) | M. Necas (J. Gardiner) (16:30)
2nd: W. Foegele (J. Staal, J. Williams) (4:20) | S. Aho (A. Svechnikov) (11:21 | V. Trocheck (N. Niederreiter, M. Necas) (16:26) (PPG)
3rd: T. Teravainen (B. McGinn) (10:37)

Chicago Blackhawks

2

1st: D. Strome (K. Dach) (4:27)
2nd: P. Kane (Unassisted) (18:20)
3rd: No Scoring

Minnesota Wild (OT)

3

1st: No Scoring
2nd: K. Fiala (A. Galchenyuk, J. Eriksson Ek) (3:21) | J. Spurgeon (R. Suter, E. Staal) (15:52) (PPG)
3rd: No Scoring
OT: E. Staal (K. Fiala) (1:20)

San Jose Sharks

1

1st: A. True (M. Karlsson, E. Kane) (7:48)
2nd: No Scoring
3rd: No Scoring

Colorado Avalanche

4

1st: No Scoring
2nd: G. Landeskog (A. Burakovsky, C. Makar) (9:29) | P. Bellemare (Unassisted) (17:26)
3rd: I. Cole (V. Kamenev) (6:26) | N. Mackinnon (G. Landeskog, J. Donskoi) (16:11)

Dallas Stars

2

1st: T. Seguin (C. Perry) (8:17)
2nd: No Scoring
3rd: T. Seguin (J. Benn, C. Perry) (2:29)

Vegas Golden Knights

4

1st: C. Stephenson (R. Smith, N. Holden) (2:56)
2nd: P. Stastny (M. Stone, S. Theodore) (3:59) (PPG) | M. Stone (W. Karlsson) (18:08)
3rd: R. Smith (P. Stastny) (11:18) (SHG)

Montreal Canadiens

2

1st: No Scoring
2nd: P. Byron (M. Domi) (9:37)
3rd: J. Armia (Unassisted) (17:29)

Los Angeles Kings (SO)

3

1st: M. Frk (G. Vilardi, M. Roy) (16:10)
2nd: K. Macdermid (A. Kempe) (1:03)
3rd: No Scoring
SO: Los Angeles wins 2-0

 


 

The Standings

(After games played March 17, 2020)

Eastern Conference

Atlantic Division
GP W L OTL Pts RoW
Boston Bruins 72 46 14 12 104 46
Tampa Bay Lightning 73 46 21 6 98 44
Florida Panthers 73 37 28 8 82 34
Toronto Maple Leafs 72 36 27 9 81 35
Montreal Canadiens 74 32 32 10 74 28
Buffalo Sabres 73 30 35 8 68 28
Ottawa Senators 73 25 36 12 62 24
Detroit Red Wings 74 17 52 5 39 14
Metropolitan Division
GP W L OTL Pts RoW
Washington Capitals 72 44 20 8 96 40
Philadelphia Flyers 73 43 23 7 93 38
Pittsburgh Penguins 72 42 24 6 90 39
Carolina Hurricanes (WC1) 72 41 25 6 88 36
New York Islanders (WC2) 72 37 24 11 85 34
Columbus Blue Jackets 73 34 24 15 83 34
New York Rangers 72 37 30 5 79 36
New Jersey Devils 73 29 31 13 71 25

Western Conference

Central Division
GP W L OTL Pts RoW
St. Louis Blues 74 44 20 10 98 42
Colorado Avalanche 73 44 21 8 96 43
Dallas Stars 73 39 26 8 86 36
Winnipeg Jets (WC1) 74 39 29 6 84 36
Nashville Predators (WC2) 72 37 27 8 82 34
Minnesota Wild 73 36 28 9 81 34
Chicago Blackhawks 73 33 31 9 75 29
Pacific Division
GP W L OTL Pts RoW
Vegas Golden Knights 74 42 24 8 92 39
Edmonton Oilers 74 39 26 9 87 37
Calgary Flames 74 38 29 7 83 31
Vancouver Canucks 72 37 28 7 81 33
Arizona Coyotes 73 35 29 9 79 30
Anaheim Ducks 73 31 33 9 71 26
Los Angeles Kings 72 30 35 7 67 28
San Jose Sharks 73 31 37 5 67 29