Three straight losses for the Winnipeg Jets. That’s the situation after they were beaten 4-1 by the visiting Dallas Stars on Friday night.
Not the best way to begin a six-game home stand. The Stars got out to a 4-0 lead and virtually cruised to victory, despite some amount of push from the Jets in the third period.
“I think we’re focusing a little bit too much on what everybody’s saying…,” Jets forward Evander Kane told the Winnipeg Free Press.
“I think we just need to go out and play hockey. I think we’re hesitant and when you’re in between, you get caught flat-footed.”
The Jets were victimized by the play of Stars forward Tyler Seguin, who scored twice and added two assists, which marks the first time in his NHL career that he has hit four points in a single regular season game.
The Jets got off to a good start, winning their first two games and against opponents from Edmonton and L.A.
But since then, they have struggled, scoring just four times in their past three games, all losses.
“We were better winning battles, there were some things I saw,” Jets’ head coach Claude Noel told the Winnipeg Sun.
“People will say the score is what it is at that juncture but I saw different things. We played with a lot more vim and vigour, if you will.”
Well, the NHL’s two new initiatives for ’15-16 seem to be going swimmingly.
Not long after Ottawa successfully made the second-ever coach’s challenge, fans got their first look at 3-on-3 overtime.
And what a look it was.
In the span of 137 seconds, the Tampa Bay Lightning and Philadelphia Flyers combined for eight shots on goal, a few breakaways, some tremendous saves — including one on a penalty shot — and, finally, Jason Garrison‘s game-winning goal on a breakaway from center, giving the Bolts a 3-2 win.
It was, in a word, fun.
Lots of fun.
A quick sampling of reviews:
Of course, not everybody was a fan:
Now, to temper things a bit — this was the first time we’ve seen 3-on-3 with something on the line, so there was a novelty factor at play. There’s also no guaranteeing future OT sessions will be as exciting as this.
But none of that takes away from the fact 3-on-3 made for appointment viewing, and immense entertainment value. The prospect of future games like this? That’s pretty exciting.
Didn’t take long for Alex Burmistrov to make his presence felt — though not in a good way.
Burmistrov, playing in his first game for the Jets after a two-year stint in Russia, delivered a questionable elbow to the head of Boston’s Patrice Bergeron late in the first period of Thursday’s season-opener:
Burmistrov received a two-minute minor for an illegal check to the head, while Bergeron received a matching minor for roughing (retaliating for the elbow, specifically).
The Bruins went into the intermission leading 1-0, and have yet to update Bergeron’s status.
Update: Bergeron stayed in the game, but B’s head coach Claude Julien was none too pleased with the hit. Following the game, he called for the NHL’s Department of Player Safety to look at it…