New York Islanders 5 Winnipeg Jets 4 (Shootout) – For the third straight home game, the Jets went to extra time. Tuesday it was a shootout win against Tampa and Thursday an overtime win against Carolina.
This was a point gained for the Jets vs a point lost as they trailed 3-1 in the second and trailed 4-3 late into the third. Yet, it was a game they very easily could have won.
The Jets ended the six-game home stand at 5-0-1. The Islanders are now 11-1-2 in their last 14 and 8-0-2 in their last 10. The Jets also lost Olli Jokinen and Zach Bogosian during the game due to injury. Jokinen only played :48 seconds before suffering a lower body injury, while Bogosian was shaken up on a hit from Kyle Okposo but stayed in the game until midway through the third period. The hit by Okposo seemed to catch Bogosian in the head. Both are listed as day to day.
Frans Nielsen opened the scoring as the Jets did not score first for just the second time in the last seven games. Bogosian tied the game before Josh Bailey restored the lead and the first period ended 2-1.
Matt Martin made it a 3-1 game but 40 seconds later, Kyle Wellwood made it a one-goal game and then 2:57 later Wellwood tied the game.
Michael Grabner gave the Islanders the lead midway through the third, setting the stage for a bit of a gamble by Jets head coach Claude Noel. With the Jets going on a power play with 2:08 left in regulation, he pulled Ondrej Pavelec and went with six attackers. The move paid off as Bryan Little tied the game just seven seconds later. The play started with Little winning the face-off.
Both teams had great chances, including a big save by Pavelec off John Tavares, Grant Clitsome hitting the post and Isles defenceman Lubomir Visnovsky stopping a Wellwood shot with goaltender Evgeni Nabokov caught way out of position.
In the shootout, Andrew Ladd was the only Jet to beat Nabokov, while Brad Boyes and Tavares scored for New York.
Wellwood is now 4-3-7 in his last eight games. Ladd picked up two more points to extend his point streak to a career-high seven (4-10-14), Blake Wheeler extended his point streak to six (3-8-11) , Little extended his to six games (2-8-10), while that line has combined for 34 points in the six-game homestand.
Bogosian's point streak is at four (2-5-7), Grant Clitsome had two assists while Ron Hainsey led the Jets in ice-time at 27:37. Eric Tangradi had a great shift in the third period when he blocked four shots in about a 25 second span.
Evander Kane did not partake in the warm-up but all Noel offered post-game was "sometimes medical, sometimes equipment. It happens." On pulling Pavelec with over two minutes to go, "How were we doing in the game? Were we creating chances? We had a lot at stake. We needed the puck, then we needed a goal. We also had a time-out left. So you put your best six players on the ice and way you go. It was a hard-fought game. Great energy in the building, great energy in the game."
Jets will now play the two games on the road (Buffalo on Monday and Washington on Tuesday) before closing out the regular schedule with a home game Thursday against Montreal. (All games are available on TSN Jets and TSN 1290.)