WINNIPEG – The Winnipeg Jets dropped a second straight game as they opened a three game homestand with a 4-1 loss to the Boston Bruins on Monday at MTS Centre.
The Jets outshot, out-hit and out-chanced the Bruins but only managed to beat Tuukka Rask once in suffering a second straight loss.
“We’re in pretty control of that game until they score there at the end of the second period.” said Jets captain Blake Wheeler. “And we just felt like we spent a lot of time in the box in the third period and just could never really get in a rhythm to try and tie it up.”
Wheeler scored the Jets only goal while Connor Hellebuyck stopped 21 of 24 shots. The Jets out-hit the Bruins 24 to 15 and threw 35 shots on Rask.
“For most part of this game I thought we played not bad.” said forward Mathieu Perreault. “We were in the offensive zone, we kinda created some movement there. We just weren’t able to put it in the back of the net.”
The Jets best chances came on the powerplay. But they failed to capitalize with the man advantage going 0-for-5 with the extra skater.
“Our entries are still a work in progress.” said Wheeler. “We aren’t quite where we need to be in terms of our retrievals and that’s a huge part of the powerplay. Getting that thing setup and getting where you need to be, so we’ll continue to work at it. I thought it was a good step in the right direction.”
Dominic Moore, David Pastrnak, Brandon Carlo and Zdeno Chara scored goals for the Bruins. The Jets have now trailed in the third period in each and every one of their three games this season.
“It’s tough when you get to the second half of the third and you’re trying to battle back three games in a row.” said Tyler Myers. “So tighten up a little bit. It goes back to working hard in practice. Finding that level that we need to get to be more consistent. I think when we find that level, that consistency will come with that.”
Jets head coach Paul Maurice was looking for his team to spend more time in the offensive zone against the Bruins and at least in that area they had some success.
“We’ve got a far better chance of generating offence the way we did tonight in terms of spending more time in the zone.” Maurice said. “When you can catch teams off the rush, which we like to do, you’ll get some cleaner looks at the net.”
At the midway point of the opening period, Wheeler stepped out of the penalty box and right into a breakaway as Alex Burmistrov hit him with a long stretch pass. Wheeler made a nifty move to deke right around Rask to score his third goal of the young campaign. Burmistrov had the only assist and Winnipeg had the early upper hand.
The lead lasted only 19 seconds though. As they were announcing Wheeler’s goal, Tim Schaller sent the puck in front of the net and Dominic Moore buried it behind Hellebuyck. Noel Acciari also had an assist. Moore’s first goal of the season tied the game at one apiece.
Adam Lowry and Mark Scheifele both had opportunities to restore the lead for the Jets late in the period but Rask turned them both aside. The Jets outshot the Bruins 15-9 in the period.
The Bruins found the goal again 4:43 into the middle period. Chara’s shot from the boards made its way through a maze of players and beat Hellebuyck high on the glove side. But Maurice used a coaches challenge and the goal was overturned on the replay because the play was offside. It remained 1-1.
The Bruins went ahead again with 57.4 seconds remaining and this goal would count. Pastrnak threw the pass in front of the goal and Toby Enstrom knocked the puck into his own net. Brad Marchand and Rask had the helpers on Pastrnak’s fourth goal of the year and it was 2-1 after 40 minutes. The shots were 12-7 in favour of the Jets in the second period.
The Bruins clung to the one goal lead until the final two minutes when they took advantage of a Jets turnover. Pastrnak found a wide open Marchand in front of the net. Hellebuyck made a great poke check but knocked the puck right to Brandon Carlo who fired in the shot to give Boston some insurance.
And then with under a minute remaining Chara sealed the deal with an empty netter and the Bruins picked up a 4-1 triumph.
With 2 assists in the game, Rask, the Bruins goalie, led all players in points.
The Jets will next see action on Wednesday at home to the Toronto Maple Leafs.
WATCH: Winnipeg Jets Post Game Reaction
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