Big first period carries Jets past Predators

Big first period carries Jets past Predators

Friday, 11.08.2013 / 11:22 PM / News
NHL.com

WINNIPEG - The Winnipeg Jets got some revenge on an opponent - and a goaltender -- that had tormented them this season as the Nashville Predators' seven-game road trip experienced some severe turbulence.

The Jets scored a season-high four first-period goals and rolled to a 5-0 victory against the Predators at MTS Centre on Friday. The Predators had taken the teams' first two meetings and came to Winnipeg after beating the Colorado Avalanche 6-4 in Denver two nights earlier.

But the Jets ended Nashville starter Carter Hutton's evening by scoring three goals on eight shots in the first 8:23 of the game. Hutton had held the Jets to one goal on 39 shots in his season debut at MTS Centre on Oct. 20, a 3-1 Nashville win. Four nights later in Nashville, Hutton stopped 34 shots in a 3-2 overtime win against the Jets.

Winnipeg (7-9-2) had lost seven of its past nine games and fallen to next-to-last in the Western Conference. Nashville (8-6-2) had been 2-0-1 on a seven-game road trip that included a victory against the Los Angeles Kings prior to the win against the Avalanche. The Predators visit the New Jersey Devils on Sunday.

Jets goaltender Ondrej Pavelec, who returned after backup Al Montoya had started the past two games, stopped 41 shots in his first shutout since March 1, 2012. Pavelec departed his previous home outing last Saturday in the second period after the Chicago Blackhawks beat him four times in a 5-1 loss.

The win also provided Winnipeg with some relief amid a schedule that has featured two meetings with the Blackhawks in the past week, a visit from the San Jose Sharks on Sunday and a visit to the Detroit Red Wings next Tuesday. Winnipeg had struggled against the Central Division this season, and was 2-7-1 against division rivals before beating Nashville.

Bryan Little scored twice and leads the Jets with 10 goals, putting him in a four-way tie for third in the League.

Winnipeg owned a 3-0 lead on eight shots by 8:23 of the first period. Little scored the Jets' first goal of the night at 3:04 before Olli Jokinen had his third of the season at 6:47, breaking a nine-game drought. Dustin Byfuglien scored his first goal of the season, ending his 21-game goalless streak, and Devin Setoguchi welcomed Marek Mazanec, Hutton's replacement, by scoring his fourth of the season at 16:45.

Little added his second of the night midway through the third period.

Mazanec, whom the Predators recalled from the Milwaukee Admirals of the American Hockey League on Tuesday, made his NHL debut. He was 5-0-0 in his first five starts with Milwaukee with a 1.97 goals-against average and a .933 save percentage. Mazanec became the fourth right glove-catching goaltender to play in the League this season.

The Jets feasted on the Predators from the start. Little scored on the Jets' third shot of the game, working the puck loose before releasing a shot that slipped through Hutton. Jokinen made it 2-0 when he took Evander Kane's centering pass from the right circle and redirected a shot past Hutton.

Byfuglien ended Hutton's night when he took a cross-ice pass from Grant Clitsome and drove a rising left-point shot through Hutton's pads. Jokinen set up the fourth goal when he won a left-circle draw and shuffled the puck to the slot, where Setoguchi deposited it past Mazanec.

Little close the scoring when he picked up the rebound of Blake Wheeler's right-side shot and beat Mazanec under the crossbar at 9:53.

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STANDINGS

WESTERN CONFERENCE
  TEAM GP W L OT GF GA PTS
1 z - ANA 82 54 20 8 266 209 116
2 y - COL 82 52 22 8 250 220 112
3 x - STL 82 52 23 7 248 191 111
4 x - SJS 82 51 22 9 249 200 111
5 x - CHI 82 46 21 15 267 220 107
6 x - LAK 82 46 28 8 206 174 100
7 x - MIN 82 43 27 12 207 206 98
8 x - DAL 82 40 31 11 235 228 91
9 PHX 82 37 30 15 216 231 89
10 NSH 82 38 32 12 216 242 88
11 WPG 82 37 35 10 227 237 84
12 VAN 82 36 35 11 196 223 83
13 CGY 82 35 40 7 209 241 77
14 EDM 82 29 44 9 203 270 67

STATS

2013-2014 REGULAR SEASON
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
S. Weber 79 23 33 -2 56
P. Hornqvist 76 22 31 1 53
C. Smith 79 24 28 16 52
M. Fisher 75 20 29 -4 49
R. Josi 72 13 27 -2 40
M. Cullen 77 10 29 4 39
C. Wilson 81 11 22 -1 33
N. Spaling 71 13 19 2 32
R. Ellis 80 6 21 9 27
G. Bourque 74 9 17 -5 26
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
C. Hutton 20 11 4 .910 2.62
D. Dubnyk 11 18 3 .891 3.43

 
 

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