The Blue Jackets dropped to 0-5-0 at home. They were coming off a 2-1 loss at Washington on Friday night.
Winnipeg appeared to be in control late in the third period, especially after killing off a double minor penalty that appeared to be Columbus’ best chance to get back in the game.
With McElhinney pulled for an extra attacker, Hartnell scored from the left circle with 1:14 remaining. But the Jets held on.
Winnipeg scored first for only the third time this season. Little drove a slap shot past Bobrovsky at 5:52 of the first period for his fifth of the season. The Blue Jackets got caught in a line change, leaving Little wide open down the right side.
Only 53 second later on a clean Jets faceoff win, Copp, all alone, scored from the low slot after a sneaky carom of the end board.
Midway through the period, Saad cut Winnipeg’s lead to one. Stationed at the left post, he tipped in Brandon Dubinsky‘s cross-ice pass for his fourth in his first year with Columbus.
The Jets made it 3-1 with a power-play goal at 16:59. Wheeler powered a shot from the left dot that Bobrovsky couldn’t handle with his glove.
Wheeler has at least a point in all but one of Winnipeg’s games and is among the league scoring leaders with 14 overall. Dustin Byfuglien picked up his 350th career point on the play.
In the second period, each team had two power plays – Columbus’ Ryan Johansen, who didn’t play the past two games due to fatigue – took slashing and cross-checking penalties – but neither could cash in. Pavelec stopped Boone Jenner‘s shot on a 2-on-1 with Saad on the best chance of the period.
NOTES: The Blue Jackets are 2-3-0 since John Tortorella was hired as coach after an 0-7-0 start. … Winnipeg rookie Nikolaj Ehlers‘ five-game point streak ended. … Saad returned after missing Friday’s game because of an illness. … Jets D Tyler Myers and RW Drew Stafford played their 400th and 600th career games, respectively.