The good news after the Jets 4-0 win over the Montreal Canadiens on Thursday is that they're now 10-2-1 in their last 13 home games.
The bad news is they still have not clawed their way into the top eight spots in the Eastern Conference.
Ondrej Pavelec picked up his third shutout of the season, the ninth of his career and second shutout against Montreal. In his last four games Pavelec has now stopped 119 of 123 shots for a save percentage of .967. His goals against average and save percentage are the best they have been all season.
Blake Wheeler was the offensive leader for the Jets with his third three point game of the season. He opened the scoring on a power play after a great pass by Dustin Byfuglien, and scored to make it 3-0 early in the second, a goal that really deflated the Canadiens.
Wheeler now has 17 points in his last 16 games and continues to lead the team in assists and plus/minus.
Tanner Glass matched his career high with his fourth of the season and also matched his career for points in a season with 11.
"The extra ice time I am getting has really helped. I feel very comfortable here," Glass told Sara Orlesky in a post-game interview on TSN Jets.
Jets penalty killing was terrific as they were shorthanded five times in the second. Jim Slater lead the way in that department winning 15 of 20 faceoffs. It marked the first time in 11 games the Jets have been shorthanded more than four times in a game.
Winnipeg has now killed 23 of 26 in the last eight games, and held Montreal to just seven shots on their five power play opportunities.
Montreal coach Randy Cunneyworth scratched P.K Subban and Lars Eller for the game. Canadiens have now lost five in a row.
Andrew Ladd had seven shots on goal to lead the Jets in that category.
Jets close out a busy week with a home game against Pittsburgh. (TSN Jets, TSN 1290) Penguins Coach Dan Bylsma was in attendance, doing some pre scouting on the Jets.
News on Brian Little is not great. Will not play against Pittsburgh and it does not look like he will be ready for the game in Colorado on the 27th.
From Coach Claude Noel post game:
"Byfuglien made a great play to Wheeler on the first goal. We wanted to demoralize them as they have been stuggling and we did that with the two first period goals. We had a great game from a lot of people. Penalty killing was great and we played the outcome of the game. By that I mean we played for the goaltender."
In the morning Noel talked about play the game with more spirit. "We had good energy. At times I would still like a little more north and south. But Pavelec was really strong when we needed him to be and the "D" in front on him was solid."
The Coach really liked the game of Wheeler. "He really skated, was patient with the puck, was evasive and hard to handle. Glad to see that line play well because it has been an adjustment for them with Little being out." As for the Penguins? "We need short shifts to start the game."
Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays to everyone. One more game before a couple of days off, and a win would be a great present for the Jets fans, who again tonight showed why they are number one in the NHL.