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Wheeler helps Jets rally past Wild; Maurice wins 600th game

Scores tiebreaking goal in third period after giving up lead

by Scott Billeck / NHL.com Correspondent

WINNIPEG -- Blake Wheeler scored his 200th NHL goal with 6:46 left in the third period to give the Winnipeg Jets a 4-3 win against the Minnesota Wild at Bell MTS Place on Friday.

Kyle Connor rushed up the right side and found Wheeler with a centering pass he took to his backhand to beat Wild goaltender Devan Dubnyk.

"You want to score goals that are meaningful," Wheeler said. "It makes it a little more extra special. You just want to win games, 200 [goals] or not, it's nice to contribute to a win."

 

[WATCH: All Wild vs. Jets highlights]

 

Patrik Laine scored twice, and Nikolaj Ehlers scored for the Jets (4-3-0). Connor Hellebuyck made 24 saves and is 4-0-0 this season.

It was Paul Maurice's 600th win as an NHL coach. He is 600-572-101 with 99 ties for the Jets, Carolina Hurricanes, Toronto Maple Leafs and Hartford Whalers. 

Chris Stewart, Mikko Koivu and Marcus Foligno scored for the Wild (1-2-2). Dubnyk made 26 saves.

"We're fighting," Minnesota forward Eric Staal said. "Obviously, being down two, and we kind of found our legs and got better and clawed our way back. But [it's] frustrating right now losing that one in regulation. We've got to find ways to raise our compete and just get the job done."

Laine scored on the power play at 8:07 of the first period, a one-timer from Wheeler's cross-ice pass.

Video: MIN@WPG: Laine hammers one-timer past Dubnyk for PPG

"Blake's passes are always good, so it's easy to shoot from those passes," Laine said. "That's kind of my job on the [power play], is to find a way and get a shot off."

Ehlers made it 2-0 with his sixth goal and eighth point in his past five games at 9:49. The goal, scored on a wrist shot from the slot, was waved off, but video review showed the puck went off the padding in the back of the net before coming out.

Stewart scored to extend his point streak to five games (five goals, two assists) at 19:06 to make it 2-1. He hit Jets defenseman Josh Morrissey behind the net and moved into the slot, where Jason Zucker found him with a pass. 

Koivu tied the game 2-2 on a backhand past Hellebuyck at 10:51 of the second period. Foligno redirected Mike Reilly's point shot past Hellebuyck on the power play for his first of the season to make it 3-2 at 15:39.

Laine scored his fourth of the season on the power play to tie the game 3-3 at 19:27.

"I thought we took the play to them until we got the lead, then it seems like we're afraid to win, because all five games right now, we've been tied or ahead with less than 10 minutes to go in the third period," Wild coach Bruce Boudreau said. 

Video: MIN@WPG: Koivu finishes Zucker's feed with backhand

 

Goal of the game

Winnipeg's top line used its speed, with Connor carrying the play into the zone from the center line and Wheeler getting past Wild defenseman Matt Dumba to create an opening to make a quick deke past Dubnyk for the game-winner.

Video: MIN@WPG: Wheeler nets 200th career goal for late lead

 

Save of the game

Hellebuyck fought through a screened point shot from Wild defenseman Ryan Suter and got his glove on it with 32 seconds remaining. 

Video: MIN@WPG: Hellebuyck fights off traffic to make save

 

Highlight of the game

Laine took a back pass from Mark Scheifele at the top of the left circle and his slap shot deflected off Koivu's stick over Dubnyk's blocker on the power play in the second period.

Video: MIN@WPG: Laine blasts second PPG past Dubnyk

 

They said it

"I think we can negate the swings by playing better defense. I think we gave them their opportunities and I think we created a bunch (of our own) by good forechecks. We gave up too many chances to that high-powered an offense." -- Wild forward Jason Zucker

 

"I don't think there's a significance to it. Most of them looked just like that. Hold your breath for two and a half hours. I won't think about it a whole lot. It's nice." -- Jets coach Paul Maurice on his 600th NHL win 

 

Need to know

Zucker had his third two-point game of the season (two goals, four assists). … Wheeler has eight points (one goal, seven assists) in seven games. … Scheifele had a go-ahead goal overturned by video review after it was deemed Wheeler interfered with Dubnyk at 8:42 of the third. … Winnipeg has five days off before its next game.

 
What's next

Wild: At the Calgary Flames on Saturday (10 p.m. ET; CBC, FS-N, NHL.TV)

Jets: At the Pittsburgh Penguins on Thursday (7 p.m. ET; ATTSN-PT, TSN3, NHL.TV)

 

Video: Wheeler, Laine help Jets rally past Wild, 4-3

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