- Hellebuyck made 32 saves as the Winnipeg Jets upset the Western Conference-leading Edmonton Oilers 5-2.
- Winnipeg had a 1-0 lead in the first period and a 4-0 lead after the second.
Connor Hellebuyck understood it wouldn’t be an easy night in net, but he had plenty of help, and it paid off.
The Winnipeg Jets defeated the Western Conference-leading Edmonton Oilers 5-2, with Hellebuyck making 32 saves.
“It’s on each time a club comes in and wins a lot of games,” Hellebuyck said. “It’s not going to be a fun night; it’s going to be a grind, and I think we all knew that going in.”
Winnipeg’s goals came from Adam Lowry, Nikolaj Ehlers, Pierre-Luc Dubois, Mark Scheifele, and Kyle Connor (9-3-3). Josh Morrissey also had two assists.
“We needed solid defence, physical play, good sticks, one-on-ones, and good offence,” Dubois added. “We had to put a lot out there tonight, and we did a terrific job of it.”
Leon Draisaitl, the NHL’s leading scorer, scored a pair of power-play goals for Edmonton (11-4-0), giving him 17 goals and 33 points on the season.
Connor McDavid, the league’s second-leading scorer, assisted on both goals, bringing his total to 29 points and keeping his run of collecting at least one point in each of his team’s 15 games this season intact.
“I don’t think we were as horrible as the score suggests,” Draisaitl said, “but if you’re down 4-0, you’re not going to win.”
Mikko Koskinen stopped 22 of the 26 shots he faced in the third period before being replaced by Stuart Skinner. The backup made eight saves. Koskinen’s record now stands at 9-2-0.
It was the final game of a five-game road trip in which Edmonton had only won twice (2-3-0).
Edmonton coach Dave Tippett remarked, “I didn’t like our game as much in St. Louis [but] we got a win there.” “And when we got here, you could tell we didn’t have much energy left to finish the journey. We simply lacked the oomph to come back after getting down so early and chasing the game.”
A rematch between the clubs will take place in Edmonton on Thursday. It was the first time the two teams had met since the Jets swept the Oilers in the first round of the playoffs last season.
Winnipeg had a 1-0 lead in the first period and a 4-0 lead after the second.
Lowry put the Jets on the board with a blooper goal that Koskinen should have saved at 2:09 of the first period.
The Jets forward received the puck at his blue line and went straight for the goalie. But, instead, he discharged a shot from the circle’s head that hit Koskinen, slid under him, and began dribbling toward the goal line. He attempted but failed to swipe it away with his stick.
In front of 13,473 fans, Winnipeg, which has won three straight at Canada Life Centre, outshot the visitors 12-9 in the first period.
In the third period, the Oilers show signs of life.
In the second period, both goalies made some difficult saves.
At 6:59, Ehlers scored at equal strength with a slap shot from the top of the circle to make it 2-0 after Koskinen stopped Morrissey on a close shot during a power play.
Draisaitl was given four-minute misconduct for high sticking 16 seconds later, and Winnipeg capitalised when Dubois redirected a Morrissey shot for his ninth season goal at 10:01.
With 38 seconds left in the first, Koskinen was screened for Scheifele’s goal.
Early in the fourth quarter, Winnipeg’s infractions proved costly.
At 1:19, Andrew Copp was called for tripping, and at 2:26, Logan Stanley was penalised for boarding.
At 2:32, Draisaitl scored his first goal with the two-man advantage. Then, at 3:38, his second goal was initially called back due to goalie interference, but Tippett appealed, and it was decided that the Oilers player had been shoved into Hellebuyck.
With 5:05 remaining, Hellebuyck made a crucial save on Jesse Puljujarvi’s shot from right beyond the crease.
With 1:37 remaining, Connor scored his team-leading 12th goal of the season into an empty net.
Source: CBC News
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