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Jets taking advantage of friendly schedule

Winnipeg is 5-3 against Pacific Division this season

by Jamie Thomas @JamieThomasTV / Winnipeg Jets

EL SEGUNDO, CA - After playing in so many one goal games this season, the Winnipeg Jets had some pretty good breathing room during the majority of their win over the San Jose Sharks Wednesday night.

The Jets were all smiles during a 35 minute practice on American Thanksgiving in California which comes from success on the road and their effort against the red hot Sharks.

"It's nice to have that cushion where you can roll the lines a little more and kind of keep everyone fresh," said Adam Lowry.

"With that nice little break we had (three days without a game) I thought we really had our legs. After that first ten minutes I think we did a pretty good job of playing how we wanted to play."

Video: PRACTICE | Adam Lowry

The Jets are in the midst of eight of 10 games on the road and have shown time and time again they have no issues being away from Bell MTS Place. The schedule maker has also been kind as shown by the break between the wins over Columbus and San Jose. However, the team has taken advantage of all the rest being offered from the schedule.

"We've been playing a lot of hockey, I think we had two days off coming off the Dallas game and that was really nice," said Mathieu Perreault.

"Restore the body, get some rest and for the last two games it really showed in the way we played. We had a ton of energy and it was really nice to get those days off."

Video: PRACTICE | Mathieu Perreault

Only Luca Sbisa didn't take part of the Jets practice, he is expected to play against the Ducks on Friday afternoon. Here are the line rushes and defence pairings:

Connor-Scheifele- Laine 

Ehlers-Wheeler-Roslovic 

Copp-Lowry-Perreault 

Luoto-Gustafsson-Shaw 

Spacek 

Morrissey-Poolman 

Kulikov-Pionk 

Bitetto-Dahlstrom 

Hellebuyck 

Brossoit

Anthony Bitetto had a pretty big night in his return to the Jets lineup after not dressing for the previous eight games. He had a team leading five hits, added an assist and played 17:56 against the Sharks. Paul Maurice says the coaching staff was expecting him to play well because of his practice habits.

"The day after he sat out (for the first time this season) he practiced hard. There was no drop. He didn't take two weeks to feel sorry for himself," said Maurice.

"He's just as engaged in practice and if you sit inside the bowl which you guys (the media) do, you can hear him talking the entire time. So he put himself in a position to be a good player."

Video: PRACTICE | Paul Maurice

READY FOR THE DUCKS

Winnipeg has already played Anaheim this season falling 7-4 at Honda Center but that looks to be one of the few bright spots for the Ducks who have just three wins in twelve games since Halloween.

"So they got off to a real hot start and when things started to cool, we are talking about one goal events here. We're not talking about them getting their doors blown off," said Maurice of the Ducks who lost Wednesday night in a shootout to Arizona.

"They are very well coached, they run a very difficult neutral zone to get easily through."

Connor Hellebuyck will start in goal again for Winnipeg thanks to the fact the Jets schedule has allowed him to get a lot of rest.

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