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Clinton's Five Storylines - WPG @ LAK

Jets 10-2-1 record in November has set a franchise record

by Mitchell Clinton @MitchellClinton / WinnipegJets.com

The Winnipeg Jets conclude a three-game road trip through California tonight when they take on the Los Angeles Kings. 

Here are the Five Storylines to keep an eye on:

NEW HEIGHTS IN NOVEMBER

Friday's win over the Anaheim Ducks improved the Jets record this month to 10-2-1, a new franchise record for the most wins in November. They have a chance to make it even better tonight in Los Angeles, the second of three meetings between the two teams this season.

"All of these games this month, maybe halfway through that San Jose game there was a comfort level. We're getting good at being in really uncomfortable games, tight games, one play games. They're all tight," said Maurice.

"We've been pretty consistent for a while."

The Kings have struggled on the road (2-9-1), but inside Staples Center, they have a record of 8-5-1, including a 5-1-1 run in their last seven outings on home ice.

POTENT POWER PLAY

With Neal Pionk's goal against the Ducks, the Jets power play has now lit the lamp in consecutive outings since head coach Paul Maurice reunited Pionk with Mark Scheifele, Blake Wheeler, Kyle Connor, and Patrik Laine.

"That power play now has to develop different ways to score. It can't be just Wheeler to Scheifele or Wheeler to Laine all night," said Maurice. "Neal's ability to shoot the puck and Kyle Connor's willingness to go to the net front creates that goal. It's good that we're seeing some different style goals."

At 74.7 per cent, the Kings penalty kill is ranked 26th in the National Hockey League, while the Jets power play is tied for 15th in the NHL on the road (16.7 per cent).

ROAD WARRIORS

The Jets are 10-4-0 on the road this season, which ties them for the league lead in road wins. Winnipeg has also won seven of their last eight games away from Bell MTS Place.

Five of those seven wins have been one-goal games, where the Jets have excelled this season with an 11-1-1 record.

"I think because of how hard we had to battle the first part of the season, it's engrained in us, it's in our DNA now. It's our expectation when we hit the ice every night," said Wheeler. "We don't shy away from those tough games. We're able to stay in that battle, stay in that fight, and be fortunate enough to get a result."

BROSSOIT GETS THE START

Connor Hellebuyck earned his second shutout of the season (and 16th of his career to put him one back of the franchise mark) against Anaheim, so on back-to-back nights, Laurent Brossoit gets the start in goal against Los Angeles.

Brossoit had 27 saves in his last outing against Columbus before having to leave the game in the third period due to cramping.

This season, Brossoit is 3-2-0 with a 0.876 save percentage. Prior to leaving his last start on November 23, the 26-year-old had won each of his past two starts.

BLUE LINE CHANGES

With Dmitry Kulikov leaving Friday's game with an upper-body injury and unable to return or be available for tonight's game against Los Angeles, Carl Dahlstrom will draw back into the line-up.

Dahlstrom's last game was Oct. 29 against the Anaheim Ducks. He has been held off the scoresheet in his 10 games in a Jets jersey and has averaged 16:15 of ice time.

With Kulikov out for the third period against the Ducks, the Jets finished the game with five defencemen. It was the second time in less than a week that the Jets have finished a game with less than six blue liners.

"It shows that we're able to adapt," said Pionk. "The whole team knows we go down to four defencemen against Columbus and five defencemen (against Anaheim), it just means we're simple from the back end and the forwards are simple too. That gives us the opportunity to change and keep ourselves fresh."

In addition, the Jets also recalled Cam Schilling from the Manitoba Moose and placed Nathan Beaulieu on injured reserve.

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