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Seven Jets score in big win over Flyers

Scheifele, Wheeler, and Pionk each record three points in 20th win of season

by Mitchell Clinton @MitchellClinton / WinnipegJets.com

WINNIPEG - It's a 60-minute game, but the Winnipeg Jets only needed 4:17 to blow Sunday's game against the Philadelphia Flyers wide open.

With the score 2-1, Joel Farabee's late hit on Mathieu Perreault (which forced the Jets forward to leave the game with an upper-body injury) put the Jets on the power play for a full five minutes.

The Jets scored twice on that man advantage, then twice more to increase the lead to 6-1, leading to a 7-3 victory at Bell MTS Place.

"You get a five-minute power play and you want to take advantage of it," said captain Blake Wheeler. "They had just scored to make it 2-1 and were riding some momentum. That was a big moment in the game. We had to take advantage of that. We did enough good things and got rewarded."

Video: PHI@WPG: Ehlers buries quick shot after the draw

The four goals in just over four minutes was the second fastest time to light the lamp four times in franchise history, second only to the mark of 3:50 set on November 18, 2017 against New Jersey.

Wheeler, Mark Scheifele, and Neal Pionk each had three points in the win, Kyle Connor had a two-point night of his own, and eight other Jets also recorded at least a point in the victory that pushed Winnipeg to 20-11-2 this season.

"Whether we've got 20 wins or not, we're not coming out and casually blowing the doors off anybody," said head coach Paul Maurice. "We still have to battle some pucks that we mishandle or need a save from Connor on some reads we can't get to in our end of the ice. They just stay in the fight.

"Then we have some firepower up front. You put us on the power play, even though it's not as lethal this year, for five straight minutes we're going to generate."

Video: PHI@WPG: Sbisa unleashes wicked slap shot

A perfectly executed set play of an offensive zone face-off put the Jets out in front.

The draw came to the right of Flyers goaltender Brian Elliott and was won by Wheeler. Jack Roslovic jumped in from the right wing to support and sent a short pass to Nikolaj Ehlers at the top of the circle. Ehlers fired a one-timer top corner for his 14th of the season just 4:57 into the opening period.

"You have him set up there for the one-timer. Ideally you'd like to win that clean, but I was able to get enough of the puck to get it over to (Roslovic) and great job by him jumping through and knowing where Nik was," said Wheeler. "A great job by those two guys. Hopefully we can start doing more of that stuff in the offensive zone."

Luca Sbisa hammered a slapshot from the left point with Adam Lowry providing just enough of a screen in front of Elliott for the puck to find the top right corner, the exact spot Ehlers' shot went minutes earlier.

Video: PHI@WPG: Wheeler rips a shot that finds the twine

After 20 minutes, the Jets led 2-0.

Philadelphia got on the board 4:15 into the second, but 4:48 later, Farabee caught Perreault with a late hit deep in the Philadelphia zone.

The major penalty was reviewed but was upheld.

"That's the most dangerous play in hockey. Even a hit from behind, a player has a sense it's coming," said Maurice. "That's why that five-minute interference came in. It can be devastating. The referees certainly got it right on the ice."

The Jets cashed in 1:31 into that man advantage, with Wheeler blasting home his ninth of the season from the right circle. Scheifele picked up an assist, extending his point streak to six games.

Video: PHI@WPG: Scheifele whips shot from the slot for a PPG

Scheifele kept the heat on when during the same power play, he finished off a pass to the slot from Wheeler to increase the Jets lead to 4-1.

"I'm really comfortable with Wheels and Scheif on the power play, it's a pretty easy game up there," Pionk said with a grin after the power play went three-for-five. "Myself shooting the puck opens a lot of seams for Scheif, for Patty, and for Wheels. KC does a good job net front."

Eighty seconds later, Logan Shaw fired home his first NHL goal since February 8, 2018. He finished off a pass from the corner from Nick Shore - giving Shore his first point as a member of the Jets.

Winnipeg wasn't done there though. Patrik Laine scored his 10th of the season 16 seconds after Shaw's goal, when his pass on a two-on-one with Scheifele banked in off a Flyers skate.

Video: PHI@WPG: Shaw laces quick shot in the 2nd period

Four goals in 4:17 put the Jets up 6-1.

With the score 6-2 in the third, Pionk's wrist shot from the point on the power play was deflected by Scheifele, then went off the leg of Connor and past Carter Hart, who came in to relieve Elliott in the third period.

Connor's 14th of the season made it 7-2 Jets. 

The Flyers added another with 10:19 left off the stick of Shayne Gostisbehere, but the Jets shut the door after that.

The Jets are now 8-1-1 in their last 10 games at Bell MTS Place with the second game of the three-game home stand coming up on Tuesday against the Carolina Hurricanes.

Video: PHI@WPG: Laine nets fortuitous goal off defender

With the calendar getting closer to the three-day holiday break, Maurice likes what he's seeing from his team.

"Christmas hockey is funny. It's unique. It's a little loose. The young guys have gone away from home for a long time and are looking forward to those three days. The older guys with kids have a lot of family in," said Maurice. "It's not just the Winnipeg Jets, it's around the teams. It's the team that can stay focused, still get their job done. Clearly these games are just as important as the last three or four games of the season."

Video: PHI@WPG: Connor deflects puck into the net

ICE CHIPS

Maurice didn't have a full update on Mathieu Perreault following the game. He did say the 31-year-old was walking around, but he didn't want to confuse that with being "fine."

Perreault will be further evaluated on Monday.

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