WATCH: Winnipeg Jets react after penalty problems prove costly in loss to Sharks
WARNING: Graphic language contained in story
WINNIPEG — Once again it was undisciplined play that came back to haunt the most penalized team in the NHL. The Winnipeg Jets gave up six powerplays as they suffered a 4-1 loss to the San Jose Sharks on Tuesday at MTS Centre.
The Jets looked like a frustrated bunch after suffering a third straight loss. The game was basically decided on a pair of calls in the latter stages of the third period.
With 7:05 remaining in a one goal game Tommy Wingels took a run at Tyler Myers in the corner and Myers responded with a cross check to the back of his head and was given a five minute major penalty for cross checking and a game misconduct.
On the following Sharks powerplay Blake Wheeler appeared to score a shorthanded goal to tie the game after Alex Stalock came out to play the puck. But the goal was disallowed and Wheeler was given a two minute penalty for tripping the goalie. The Sharks scored an insurance goal on the ensuing 5-on-3 powerplay.
“I got penalized for the goalie making a horse shit play.” Wheeler said. “He puts himself in a bad spot. I’m just looking all puck there and he knows he’s in a bad spot. He losses the puck in the corner. I make a turn. I can be man enough and admit if I slew footed him. Take a look at my left foot. It’s turning right the whole way. It never moves in his direction.”
“Obviously disappointed.” Jets captain Andrew Ladd said. “It’s a tough call in that junction in the game and obviously a big swing. So tough to see that call made.”
Myers admitted he lost his temper and deserved a penalty but thought the major penalty call was excessive.
“It was a penalty.” Myers said. “I’m not going to deny that. I’d argue about the five (minute penalty). Either way it’s a penalty I shouldn’t have taken.”
The league has cracked down on head shots in recent months but Myers doesn”t believe his penalty warrants a phone call from the league or any further discipline.
“I think it’s a joke if I get a phone call from the league.” said Myers.
“I got enough concerns that refereeing can’t be one of mine.” Jets head coach Paul Maurice said. “No comment on all the calls or any of the calls. It was a call and we didn’t kill the 5-on-3.”
Nikolaj Ehlers scored the Jets lone goal while Chris Tierney, Joe Thornton, Joe Pavelski and Joel Ward answered for the Sharks.
Connor Hellebuyck stopped 23 of 26 shots in the Jets loss.
The gloves came off midway through the first period with the game still scoreless. Mark Stuart and former Manitoba Moose forward Mike Brown had a short bout inside the Jets zone. Both sat down for five minutes.
With under five minutes remaining in the opening period Tierney sped into the Jets zone, cut into the middle and lifted a shot past Hellebuyck. His fourth goal of the season was shorthanded and it was 1-nothing Sharks.
Just 23 seconds later on the same man advantage the Jets raced in on a 2-on-1. Drew Stafford sent a backhand over to Ehlers who had the gaping cage for his seventh goal of the season. The powerplay goal tied the game 1-1.
But with just 46 seconds left in the period Tomas Hertl came flying in, Hellebuyck made the original stop but Thornton was parked on the doorstep and shoveled in the loose puck. Thornton’s ninth goal of the campaign sent the Sharks to the dressing room with a one goal lead. San Jose outshot Winnipeg 11-7 in the period.
The Jets found themselves down two men early in period two. They killed off the first penalty and Adam Lowry stepped out of the penalty box right into a breakaway but he fired the shot wide of the net.
Late in the period Brenden Dillon stepped into Andrew Ladd at the boards and the pair squared off in front of the Sharks goal.
Nearing the midway point of the third period Ward skated in on the breakaway but Hellebuyck got a piece of it to deflect it safely out of harms way.
With the Jets shorthanded Wheeler appeared to score the equalizer. Stalock came out to play the puck and Wheeler collided with him before putting the puck into the empty net. But the goal was disallowed as Wheeler was handed a two minute minor penalty for tripping.
Then with the Sharks on a 5-on-3 powerplay Pavelski roofed the one-timer on Hellebuyck for an insurance marker. His 22nd goal of the season gave the Sharks a 3-1 lead and Ward added an empty netter to make it a 4-1 final.
The Jets close out the three game homestand on Thursday against the division rival Nashville Predators.
WATCH: Jets players and head coach Paul Maurice react following a 4-1 loss to the San Jose Sharks.