Chris Thorburn

Video: Pavelec records back-to-back shutouts, Jets inch closer to playoff berth


The Winnipeg Jets are on the verge.

They’re closing in on a playoff berth, which would make it their first since moving back to Winnipeg from Atlanta. And behind their recent success has been the play of goalie Ondrej Pavelec.

The 27-year-old Pavelec stopped all 30 shots he faced, including a spectacular stick save in the first period as featured in the video below, and the Jets shut out the St. Louis Blues 1-0 on Tuesday.

Currently holding down the last Wild Card spot in the West, the Jets moved to 96 points, three ahead of the L.A. Kings, and both teams have two games remaining on their schedules.

Back-to-back games for the Jets and Pavelec? No problem. Back-to-back shutouts, as Pavelec has stopped a combined 62 shots in two games.

And unlikely scorer Chris Thorburn notched the game’s only goal for Winnipeg.

“There’s no better way. When you shutout the two teams you’re playing, it’s as good as it gets,” Jets head coach Paul Maurice told the Winnipeg Sun. “Good on the guys. Our goaltending was pretty good, everybody had a piece of the game and the goal comes from the line that played the least but had the biggest impact.”

However, this game wasn’t without controversy.

Late in the second period, Paul Stastny appeared to have the tying goal for St. Louis, but the goal was waved off and Stastny was called for slashing the stick out of Tyler Myers’ hands before taking control of the puck and beating Pavelec on the backhand.Of course, there were conflicting opinions on whether it was a valid penalty.

Here’s a video of the play:

Video: Saad scores OT winner as Blackhawks snap three game skid vs. the Jets

The Winnipeg Jets began the life without Evander Kane era by falling 2-1 in overtime against the Chicago Blackhawks Friday night.

Brandon Saad scored the overtime winner at 3:01 of the extra period.

With the win, the Blackhawks snapped a three-game losing streak against the Jets this season.

Winnipeg is now winless in six straight (0-4-2).

The game also marked Dan Carcillo’s first game back in the Blackhawks lineup after serving a six-game suspension for his cross check on Winnipeg Jets’ forward Mathieu Perreault on Jan. 16.

Just over a minute into the game, Carcillo and Chris Thorburn dropped the gloves.

Mark Scheifele had the lone goal for the Jets.

Patrick Kane scored his 26th of the season and added an assist in the win. Kane is now tied for the league lead in points (58) with Philadelphia Flyers forward Jakub Voracek.

Corey Crawford improved to 20-12-2 with a 20 save performance.

Michael Hutchinson stopped 20 shots in the loss.

Following Saad’s overtime winner, a Jets’ fan tossed an Evander Kane shirsey on the ice.

Letang’s five assists help the Pens past the Jets


Despite missing both Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin Tuesday night, the Pittsburgh Penguins had no trouble offensively.

Defenseman Kris Letang assisted on all five goals as the Pittsburgh Penguins defeated the Winnipeg Jets 5-3.

With the win, the Penguins swept the season series. Pittsburgh won the only other meeting 4-3 in a shootout on Nov. 6.

Letang missed the Penguins final game prior to the All-Star break due to a concussion.

“The main thing is the win,” said Letang. “I think the last time we played against them, they banged us pretty hard. They were finishing all of their checks, and again that’s what they tried to do. They tried to be physical on us and get us off our game, but everybody stuck to it.”

Nick Spaling opened the scoring with his seventh of the season.

Chris Thorburn and Jacob Trouba gave Winnipeg a 2-1 lead in the second period.

Steve Downie tied it 2-2 with five seconds remaining in the middle frame; however, Adam Lowry restored the Jets’ lead 59 seconds into the third.

Pittsburgh took over in the third scoring three unanswered.

David Perron and Brandon Sutter had power play goals for the Penguins.

Patric Hornqvist added an empty netter.

With the loss the Jets saw their five-game win streak end. The Winnipeg/Atlanta franchise has now lost 14 straight in Pittsburgh.

Jets blank Jackets for fifth straight win


Jets rookie Michael Hutchinson made 29 saves for his second career shutout and Blake Wheeler scored the game winner as Winnipeg blanked Columbus 4-0 Wednesday night.

The win extends the Jets’ win streak to five games. Winnipeg is 6-0-1 in its’ last seven heading into the NHL all star break.

Evander Kane, Jim Slater and Chris Thorburn had the other Jets’ goals.

The loss was a costly one for Columbus.

Sergei Bobrovsky, who was slated to take part in the all star game this weekend, left the game in the second period with a lower body injury. the club says he is day-to-day and expected to undergo an MRI on Thursday.

Bobrovsky allowed three goals on 12 shots before leaving the game.

Curtis McElhinney made 16 saves in relief.

The Jackets also lost forward Jeremy Morin to an upper-body injury in the second period.

Winnipeg won the only other meeting between the two clubs 4-2 on Nov. 25 in Columbus.

Video: Boll with a hit to the head on Postma


Columbus Blue Jackets tough guy Jared Boll caught Winnipeg Jets defenseman Paul Postma with a hit to the head in the first period Tuesday night.

Jets’ Chris Thorburn took exception to the hit and dropped the gloves with Boll.

Boll received two minutes for charging on the hit and fight minutes for fighting.

Thorburn got five minutes for fighting, two minutes for instigating plus a 10 minute misconduct.