Video: POSTGAME | JetsTV Road Report
VANCOUVER, British Columbia - The Winnipeg Jets got a taste of the winning feeling in Edmonton on Monday night, and talked this morning about wanting to carry that feeling into Vancouver.
They did just that.
Josh Morrissey, Patrik Laine, Tyler Myers, and Nikolaj Ehlers found the twine for the Jets in a 4-2 win over the Canucks at Rogers Arena Thursday night, giving them back-to-back wins to close out a three-game road trip.
"I thought the last two games, we played exactly the way we wanted to," said Myers, who's shorthanded goal proved to be the game winner. "These last two games we've adjusted nicely and kept things simple. Teams are going to make a push on us at some point, it happens in every game. These last two games are a good start to creating a new habit of how we need to play to win. We just have to keep it going."
Video: POSTGAME | Paul Maurice
Connor Hellebuyck stopped 31 shots, with 23 of those saves coming in the final 40 minutes.
"That's what I'm here for," said Hellebuyck. "I'm here for that one save that's going to leap us forward and get us a bit of momentum. You could tell the guys really picked up after that."
One of only two shots that did beat Hellebuyck gave Vancouver the early lead. With Marko Dano off for interference, Brock Boeser - making his season debut - took a pass from the corner and his wrist shot from the high slot was stopped by Hellebuyck, the rebound came right to Daniel Sedin who made no mistake from just outside the crease.
Video: POSTGAME | Connor Hellebuyck
The Jets would answer back less than two minutes later. After some nifty stick work from Patrik Laine to maintain possession, a series of one-touch passes moved from the sticks of Bryan Little and Jacob Trouba before ending in Josh Morrissey's possession on the bench side half wall. Morrissey's play to the front of the net banked off Michael Del Zotto's skate and under the arm of Jacob Markstrom to tie the game at one.
Video: POSTGAME | Tyler Myers
Laine didn't get an assist on the Jets first goal, but he lit the lamp for the second. Skating down the side boards, Little made a quick button hook at the bottom of the circle and slid a pass to Laine in the high slot. One quick wrist shot later, it was 2-1 Jets.
"It was a great pass. He's an elite centre. He can see and make those plays. I just needed to take the puck and shoot it," Laine said of Little. "I think overall we haven't tried to do anything magical on the ice. Just try to be simple and defend well. That's how we're going to win."
It was Little's second of two assists on the night, and after the line of Mark Scheifele, Blake Wheeler, and Ehlers combined for 10 points on Monday in Edmonton, head coach Paul Maurice was full of praise for the trio led by number 18.
Video: WPG@VAN: Laine whips wicked wrister past Markstrom
"They were good at both ends, battled hard. Your best line can't drive the bus every night. So Bryan had an opportunity, and they were really good," said Maurice. "He deserved to be on the ice at the end of that game, but he's playing with guys that wouldn't see a lot of six-on-five time, so I didn't have him out there. He's been that good."
With just over a minute left in the second, and with the Jets on the penalty kill, Andrew Copp took advantage of a pinching Vancouver defenceman and started a two-on-one back the other way with Tyler Myers. Copp fed Myers just inside the Canucks blue line, and Myers wired a wrist shot over the shoulder of Markstrom that kissed the crossbar before hitting mesh. It was 3-1 Jets after 40 minutes.
Video: WPG@VAN: Myers tallies shorthanded goal on the rush
The Canucks would cut the Jets lead to one with 7:17 to go, when Chris Tanev's off speed knuckler from the point got by a couple sticks halfway to the net, and evaded Hellebuyck as well, going off the bar and in.
Ehlers would seal the deal, knocking down a knee high backhand just outside the Jets blue line, and using his speed to gain separation, dumped the puck into an empty net with 4.2 seconds left in regulation.
Now back at .500, captain Blake Wheeler is looking forward to Saturday's game back home against the Carolina Hurricanes as the next opportunity to keep the good feeling in the dressing room.
Video: POSTGAME | Blake Wheeler
"Sometimes you start the season really excited, and the way we started kind of levels you a little bit," said Wheeler. "I think we're playing good hockey now. Instead of going out and blow the doors off teams, we're playing good hockey."
-- Mitchell Clinton, WinnipegJets.com