NHL.com is providing in-depth analysis for each of its 31 teams throughout August. Today, three key statistics for the Winnipeg Jets.
[Jets 31 IN 31: Season preview | 3 Questions | Top prospects | Fantasy breakdown]
1. Hellebuyck's wins
Connor Hellebuyck won 34 games last season, a decline from 44 in 2017-18 when he was a finalist for the Vezina Trophy. His save percentage dropped from .924 to .913 and shutout total from six to two. One area that could help Hellebuyck increase his win total is his save percentage when facing the power play. He had an .873 save percentage in that situation last season, which was tied for 16th among goalies to play at least 40 games. A Jets penalty kill that was tied with the Ottawa Senators for 22nd in the NHL (79.2 percent) will be without defensemen Jacob Trouba (traded to the New York Rangers) and Tyler Myers (signed as a free agent with the Vancouver Canucks). Trouba (2:28) and Myers (2:10) were second and third behind Josh Morrisey (2:49) in average shorthanded time on ice per game among Winnipeg defensemen last season.
Video: 31 in 31: Winnipeg Jets 2019-20 season preview
2. Laine's shots per game
Patrik Laine had 19 points in November, including an NHL-high 18 goals and 11 even-strength goals, but scored nine goals over the remaining 58 regular-season games. The decline in production wasn't related to ice time because his average increased from 17:12 per game through Nov. 30 to 17:15 from Dec. 1 to April 6. Laine's shooting percentage is the likely culprit. He shot 21.4 percent while averaging four shots per game from the start of the season through Nov. 30 but 6.1 percent and 2.5 shots per game the rest of the way. It's feasible to predict a bounce-back season from Laine, a restricted free agent, if he can start the season on time and improve his shots per game.
Video: WPG@VAN: Laine records his sixth career hat trick
3. Wheeler's points
Blake Wheeler ranks fifth in points (334) since the 2015-16 season behind Patrick Kane of the Chicago Blackhawks (381), Nikita Kucherov of the Tampa Bay Lightning (379), Connor McDavid of the Edmonton Oilers (372) and Sidney Crosby of the Pittsburgh Penguins (363). Wheeler had 91 points in each of the past two seasons and is tied for third in power-play points (73) with Lightning center Steven Stamkos over the span. The Jets were fourth on the man-advantage (24.8 percent) last season and Wheeler should continue to be among the NHL leaders in power-play points if their success carries over this season.
Video: STL@WPG, Gm2: Wheeler rips home Scheifele's feed
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