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GAME STORY: Oilers 6, Jets 2

Jesse Puljujärvi scored two goals as the Oilers defeated the Winnipeg Jets 6-2 in pre-season play

by Chris Wescott / EdmontonOilers.com Head Writer

Video: Malone, Puljujarvi tally twice in 6-2 win

EDMONTON, AB - Jesse Puljujärvi got his offence going while Edmonton stayed perfect in pre-season play with a 6-2 win over the visiting Winnipeg Jets.

Puljujärvi said after the morning skate he wanted to have a better all-around performance in his second pre-season game, and he expressed a desire to shoot more and score. He finished the game with three points, including his first two goals of the exhibition season.

He was bumped up during the game to play on Connor McDavid's wing after starting with Jussi Jokinen and Ryan Nugent-Hopkins.

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"He's a young guy. Confidence is everything," said McDavid. "Feeling like you belong in this league, competing against these guys and knowing you can be successful. I think for any young guy that's the true battle. Hopefully this gives him more confidence."

The Jets drew first blood at 4:51 of the opening frame, on the power play. A puck rolled rolled off Cam Talbot's pads and out to the side of the net where Michael Spacek buried a backhander to put Winnipeg up 1-0. Brendan Lemieux and Nic Petan recorded the assists.

Edmonton responded at 8:28 of the same frame. Jokinen tipped in a Matt Benning shot from the point to even things up at 1-1. The goal was Jokinen's second of the pre-season.

Malone scored from point blank at 8:45 to give the Oil their first lead of the night. Kris Russell and Chris Kelly each recorded a helper on the tally.

Oilers forward Jujhar Khaira hit JC Lipon near the corner and the two dropped the gloves for a nice tilt during a Jets power play with less than four minutes to go in the first. Khaira was given five minutes for fighting, two for interference and a misconduct.

The Jets managed to tie the game, on another power play, at 8:33 of the second. Lipon rifled a shot off the glass behind Talbot, and it rebounded right back to him. The Jet then buried the biscuit to make it a 2-2 game.

Late in the second, McDavid was one the receiving end of a shove by Dustin Byfuglien. McDavid's linemate Patrick Maroon went straight for the Jets vet in a response to the hit, receiving a roughing penalty.

Following the expiration of the Maroon penalty, McDavid put the Oilers up 3-2 with an impressive solo effort in tight. McDavid worked across the face of the netminder and potted his first of the pre-season at 2:21 of the third frame. Puljujärvi and Dillon Simpson got the helpers.

A potential game-tying goal by the Jets was waved off by the officials at 6:29 of the third frame. Lemieux took a goalie interference penalty on the play after running into Talbot.

On the ensuing power play, Puljujärvi scored his first goal of exhibition play, pouncing on a rebound off the back wall. The lively boards provided a nice assist, but Mark Letestu and McDavid got the official helpers.

Malone potted his second of the night, finding a loose puck in front of the sprawling goaltender and putting it up and over at 11:46 of the final frame to run the score up to 5-2.

"Getting a couple in the back of the net kind of relaxes you a bit going into the next couple of games know that you have a few already in you," said Malone. "It's just one of those things where you've got to keep going to the net, keep going to the right area and hopefully it finds you."

The Oilers power play struck again with Khaira finding Puljujärvi in the slot for the 6-2 lead at 15:36 of the third. McDavid got the second assist on the goal.

"He's still trying to find his game, I think," Maroon said of Puljujärvi. "He's still trying to get used to the flow. He's young still. For me, as a veteran, I just try to tell him to just go out there and have fun, don't overthink anything. When you overthink things, it just starts going not your way so play your game and just have fun out there and just enjoy it. This is a fun time to enjoy it. He played a really good third period for us tonight."

Edmonton outshot the visitors 40-22 on the night.

With the win, Edmonton is now 5-0-0 this pre-season. Next up for them is a home date with the Carolina Hurricanes on Monday night.

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