SUMMERLIN, Nevada - Wednesday brought a little piece of history as the Winnipeg Jets held their first practice in the state of Nevada, a 60-minute session at the City National Arena.
It was the first of two practice days the Jets have before taking on the expansion Vegas Golden Knights on Friday night at T-Mobile Arena.
"Vegas I think is unbelievable. Coming from a small town in Europe, all of this you see in the movies," said Nikolaj Ehlers, a native of Aalborg, Denmark. "Actually being here now is pretty amazing."
There were no changes to the line rushes that picked up a 4-1 win over the Dallas Stars on Monday, the first stop on a three-game road trip.
Video: PRACTICE | Paul Maurice
Mathieu Perreault took part in practice as well, wearing a bright yellow non-contact jersey, as he continues to get closer to a return from a lower-body injury sustained in a win over Carolina on Oct. 14
"The stage today for us was he got through an entire day on his skates," said head coach Paul Maurice. "It's going to be pain tolerance, and then conditioning, because we haven't been able to do a lot with him. I can't give you a time frame on that. I don't have him in the next two (games)."
Video: PRACTICE | Nikolaj Ehlers
Maurice believes the Golden Knights may have caught the league by surprise early on, but adds their 9-5-1 record isn't a fluke - even after a six-game road trip that produced a 1-4-1 record, including a 3-2 loss to the Montreal Canadiens last night.
"I think they've passed through that 'surprising teams' window. We've all seen them play enough games now. It's a good hockey team, well coached, very well structured.," said Maurice. "They don't give up anything off the rush. A lot of teams early on expected they'd be able to move the puck easily or at will through the neutral zone and get their scoring chances.
"That's our task this week, make sure we understand what they're good at."
Video: PRACTICE | Patrik Laine
The Jets come into Vegas with points in 11 of their last 12 games, and have outscored their opponents 24-10 in the first period this season.
"We have more experience. Everybody knows what they need to do to help this team win, and we're doing it," said Ehlers. "We're sticking to the system and everything is going well right now. But we have to keep this going and work hard to make sure this doesn't stop."
Video: PRACTICE | Kyle Connor