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The Winnipeg Jets had maybe their best defensive performance of the season and when the Edmonton Oilers did manage to get shots through, Connor Hellebuyck stopped everything he saw including the two extra shots he faced in the shootout to help the Jets to a 1-0 win over the Oilers.

First Period

No scoring in the first period.

The standard size of an NHL net is four feet high and six feet wide and has been that way for quite some time which is why it was a bit puzzling that the Jets kept missing the target on multiple scoring chances that they had earned during the first period.

The shots in the first period was 7-2 in favor of the Edmonton Oilers, but in reality after weathering a bit of a sluggish start to the game it was the Jets that ended up the better team in the first period with a 6-2 edge in scoring chances (according to NaturalStatTrick.com) in the first, but kept firing the puck wide of the Edmonton goal and making Mike Smith’s night fairly easy early on.

Second Period

No scoring in the second period.

Both teams continue to play pretty even if not boring hockey, focusing a lot on being defensively responsible and succeeding partly due to both team’s commitment to defense, but also due in part to both teams being rather sloppy with their passing and zone entries – Edmonton especially so.

But the positive in all if this has been that through 40 minutes the Jets defense has been better than we’ve seen through the first nine games of the season.

Third Period

No scoring in the third period.

WAIT. THAT’S A LIE. THERE WAS A GOAL.

Hooray! Jets lead 1-0! Huge moment for the kid Carl Dahlstrom who scores his first ever career…

*sigh*

Have I mentioned how much I hate this whole offside review BS?

By the way, also note on the very left hand side of this pic, that’s Connor McDavid laying on top of Josh Morrissey which for some reason wasn’t called a penalty.

No goal. No penalty. No common sense in the NHL.

It’s moments like this where we’ve seen the Jets fold and give up a goal against almost instantly, but again to their credit they continued to play strong defense and Connor Hellebuyck was great stopping all nine shots he faced as the teams went to overtime.

Overtime Period

Connor McDavid and Leon Draisaitl in a three on three overtime setting usually means certain doom for opposing teams, but even through they had a couple of two on one chances in extra time, McDavid had issues getting a decent shot off. The Jets as well had a couple of good scoring chances but both Hellebuyck and Smith were outstanding in the overtime session.

Shootout

Connor McDavid and Ryan Nugent-Hopkins in a three man shootout setting usually means certain doom for opposing teams, but neither of them could solve Hellebuyck, while Kyle Connor and Patrik Laine had no such issues beating Mike Smith, first with a filthy deke from KC and then a straight up snipe from Laine to send most of the sold-out Bell MTS Place faithful home happy.

TL;DR Why The Jets Won

The Jets defense held McDavid, Neal and Draisaitl in check, the penalty kill with Bryan Little as part of it was much improved and Connor Hellebuyck was strong the entire game.

JetsNation’s Top Gun

Yes Hellebuyck was helped out by a pretty good team effort on defense in front of him that kept play to the outside and really limited second chances of of saves, but it wouldn’t feel right to not give the nod to the guy who posted his first shutout of the season by stopping 28 shots and helped keep his team in the game both early in the first and late in the third.

The Boxscore

Next Flight

The Los Angeles Kings are in town on Tuesday and as crazy as it sounds, the NHL will insist they play hockey even though game one of the World Series featuring the American League champion Houston Astros starts on the same night. Puck drop between Jets and Kings is set for 7 PM CST and will be on the usual TSN 3 and TSN 1290 TV and radio dials.


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