Preview: Canucks at Jets
The Winnipeg Jets are searching for answers behind their struggles on home ice as they prepare to host the Vancouver Canucks on Tuesday, after losing their sixth consecutive game at Bell MTS Place on Sunday against Nashville. That 1-0 defeat dropped the Jets to 10-10-2 in their own building, one season after going 25-12-4 there, and Winnipeg is 0-5-1 while being outscored 28-13 during the current losing streak at home.
“We have to right the ship and figure out what to do,” Winnipeg center Andrew Copp told reporters postgame. “We’ve had home success for a long time. I don’t think it’s a long-term issue, but definitely something we have to worry about for the next game.” That next game comes against a red-hot Vancouver squad that won for the ninth time in 11 games with Sunday’s 4-1 victory at Minnesota. Center Bo Horvat scored twice to give him 12 points (five goals) in his past seven games, with at least one point in six of those contests. “I thought we played really well,” Horvat told the media afterward, “limited their opportunities, maybe slipped away a little bit in the third there, but overall I thought we played a really solid game.”
TIME: 8 p.m. ET. TV: Sportsnet Pacific, TSN3
ABOUT THE CANUCKS (25-17-4): Vancouver has averaged four goals across its past 11 games, and its power play began the week fifth in the NHL overall at 24.1 percent. Center Elias Pettersson recorded his team-leading 21st goal to open the scoring Sunday, while center J.T. Miller picked up two assists to tie defenseman Quinn Hughes for the team lead at 28. Goaltender Jacob Markstrom made 23 saves against Minnesota to improve to 8-1-0 with a .915 save percentage in nine games since Dec. 19.
ABOUT THE JETS (24-18-4): Winnipeg was shut out for the second time this season Sunday, and since the home losing streak began the Jets are 4-7-2 overall. Forward Patrik Laine is two assists shy of his career high of 28, set as a rookie in 2016-17, while center Mark Scheifele has 15 points (six goals) in his past 11 games to give him a team-leading 51 points (22 goals). Goaltender Connor Hellebuyck stopped 31-of-32 shots Sunday, but is 9-8-2 at home this season compared to 11-5-2 on the road.
1. Vancouver D Troy Stecher snapped a 25-game goal drought with a second-period tally Sunday.
2. Winnipeg D Tucker Poolman left Sunday’s game in the first period with a lower-body injury and will be sidelined for at least one week, Jets coach Paul Maurice told reporters Monday.
3. Jets F Kyle Connor recorded a goal and an assist to spark a 4-1 victory over the Canucks in the teams’ first matchup of the season Nov. 8 in Winnipeg.
PREDICTION: Canucks 3, Jets 1