Jets Shut Down Red Wings, Kyle Connor Named Jets All-Star
The Winnipeg Jets, led by Andrew Copp and All-Star Kyle Connor, defeated the Detroit Red Wings 3-0 on Thursday.
Headed into Thursdays game, the Winnipeg Jets played there first game in a week, since being dominated 7-1 by the Colorado Avalanche, followed by two postponed games, one against the Seattle Kraken and one against the Minnesota Wild.
The Jets currently have 8 players in the NHL's COVID-19 Protocol:
With this list, the Jets have been fortunate enough that only a handful of these players have been a regular on the team for the season.
Given the absences, Dylan Samberg and Declan Chisholm had their NHL Debuts against Detroit, while Austin Poganski made his season debut. In limited roles, all three of these players were fine, with Samberg getting his first NHL point as well.
Andrew Copp started the game off by scoring a brilliant goal, shooting from below the goal line. By the looks of things, Copp certainly meant to make that bounce-in play off of the Red Wings Netminder, Alex Nedjelkovic for his 9th goal of the season. Almost as impressively, Evgeny Svechnikov made a great play along the boards to keep the play alive when it looked like there was nothing left to do.
Into the second period, Kyle Connor does a great job moving the puck up the ice to find Andrew Copp, who has a clear way to the net. Copp enters the zone on a partial breakaway, and take a shot from the top of the circle, and cleanly beats Nedjelkovic for his second of the game, and tenth of the season.
To top off the 3-0 win, Kyle Connor also gets himself on the scoresheet for his 20th of the season. With a powerplay, and an empty net, the Detroit Red Wings gave Connor a bit too much space in the Jets end, and Connor makes no mistake and sends the puck 170 feet into the open cage to seal off the game.
Dylan Samberg and Declan Chisholm fit in very well for their first NHL games. Watching the game, neither were spectacular in any way, but were very sound players, and to someone who didn't know, you probably wouldn't have assumed it was their first game. Playing very smart defensive hockey, they both showed that they can compete at the NHL level when they need to be called upon.
On Thursday, the NHL announced the All-Star picks to compete in Vegas. The represetitive from the Winnipeg Jets is none other than Kyle Connor. This was a clear pick, as Connor has been having a spectacular season, and with the Last-Man-In vote, I would expect a few other Central players to be ahead of anyone else on the Jets, like Nazem Kadri, but there is always an opportunity as the NHL has said they want to send as many as they can.
The Jets play again on Tuesday against the Washington Capitals, with the game against Edmonton being postponed.
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Who do you think will get the Next Men In for the Central Division?