The Winnipeg Jets have shown themselves capable of some great things this season and on Sunday they did it again, dispatching the Philadelphia Flyers by a final score of 7-3.
It was a royal thrashing, one underlined by a four-goal 4:17 in the second stanza.
It was also a needed retort to Thursday’s loss to the Detroit Red Wings, a 5-2 trouncing that happened on the second half of a home-and-home. The Jets struck first against at home against Detroit, posting them 5-1 on Tuesday, but the loss was far from ideal.
Thanks to Sunday’s triumph, Winnipeg now has 20 wins on the season and lies third in the Central.
And they’re having fun. Remember fun? In a sport often exemplified by an exceedingly serious reputation, the Jets seem to be the sort of team to conceivably even smile once in a while.
“After a loss against Detroit, we get an off day and we know we’re not happy with what happened, but we know we’re a better team than that and we know it doesn’t bring us down,” forward Nikolaj Ehlers said Saturday. “We come in here, we have a good practice, we laugh, we tell some jokes and we stay positive. That’s what keeps it light in here. That’s what keeps it fun. And that’s what keeps it exciting to come to the rink every day.”
That positive attitude paid out some holiday bonuses against Philly and led to seven different Jets finding the scoreboard, including Ehlers.
Goalie Connor Hellebuyck stopped 29 of 32 shots and Neal Pionk, Mark Scheifele and Blake Wheeler led the way with three points each. Winnipeg went three-for-five on the power play and is now 4-1-1 in their last six.
Scheifele continued to build on his six-game point streak with 11 points in that span, while Wheeler has 14 points in his last 10 games.
Sunday’s game was marred somewhat by a nasty hit on Mathieu Perrault by Philly’s Jacob Farabee. The incident occurred in the second period and the Jets winger left the game. Later, head coach Paul Maurice said Perrault was “moving around” but added “I’m not saying he’s fine.”
Farabee will have a hearing Monday with the Department of Player Safety.
The Detroit loss and the potential loss of Perrault notwithstanding, things seem to be picking up for the Jets at just the right time. They’ll host the Hurricanes on Tuesday.
Photo credit: NHL.com