San Jose Sharks (24-28-Four) vs Winnipeg Jets (29-24-5)
Friday, 6 p.m., Bell MTS Place
TV: TSN3, Radio: TSN 1290
THE BIG MATCHUP
Jets vs. their very own demons
Recognizing the New York Rangers a four-goal lead wasn’t the most effective recreation plan for the Winnipeg Jets of their final day out. Connor Hellebuyck enjoying the puck proper to the stick of an opposing participant and having that turnover find yourself behind their internet wasn’t both. Ditto for getting beat clear when you will have the angle on opposing ahead. The penalty kill permitting one other power-play aim in opposition to didn’t assist as nicely. The Jets might have helped themselves of their Four-1 loss on Tuesday lots higher than they did. Winnipeg can’t afford that many extra priceless factors going to waste.
FIVE KEYS TO THE GAME
Will Wheeler play?
Jets captain Blake Wheeler was sick on Thursday and wasn’t within the constructing when the Jets took the observe ice at Bell MTS Place. Jets head coach Paul Maurice stated they should wait and see on Wheeler’s standing for the sport Friday. The observe Thursday featured new line combos, with the highest line the one one not getting shuffled round. Andrew Copp moved to Wheeler’s spot on the second line between Nikolaj Ehlers and Jack Roslovic. Nick Shore centred the third line between Jansen Harkins and Mason Appleton, whereas Logan Shaw was the fourth-line centre with Andrei Chibisov and Gabriel Bourque out on his flanks.
It was Luca Sbisa with Nathan Beaulieu as Winnipeg’s third defensive pairing throughout observe Thursday, a very good indication that the Italian will likely be again within the lineup for the sport Friday. Which means Anthony Bitetto will come out to make approach. Tucker Poolman, who took half as nicely however paired with Bitetto, may very well be an possibility for the sport Sunday.
The Jets flung 44 photographs on aim throughout their Four-1 loss to the New York Rangers on Tuesday. That’s greater than sufficient photographs in a recreation, however there merely wasn’t sufficient Grade-A possibilities and those that have been generated weren’t completed.
Mark Scheifele is a point-per-game centre, and one of many NHL’s elite on the place. However currently, his stick has fallen ailing. Scheifele enters play Friday with no objectives in 9 straight contests and only one over his previous 13. Questions on Scheifele’s recreation have cropped up as nicely, with some pointing to lazy backchecks and different points in the intervening time. He has six assists throughout his goalless streak, however the Jets want his goal-scoring prowess as soon as once more.
Laine, Connor producing
Whereas Scheifele hasn’t been scoring, his two linemates haven’t had the identical points. Patrik Laine has 9 objectives in his previous 10 video games and Kyle Connor was named the NHL’s second star of the week final week. He has three objectives in his previous three video games.
GAME DAY LINEUPS
Kyle Connor-Mark Scheifele-Patrik Laine
Nik Ehlers-Blake Wheeler-Mason Appleton
Jansen Harkins-Andrew Copp-Jack Roslovic
Gabriel Bourque-Nick Shore-Logan Shaw
Josh Morrissey-Neal Pionk
Dmitry Kulikov-Sami Niku
Luca Sbisa-Nathan Beaulieu
San Jose Sharks
Evander Kane-Barclay Goodrow-Patrick Marleau
Timo Meier-Joe Thornton-Kevin Labanc
Melker Karlsson-Joel Kellman-Stefan Noesen
Marcus Sorensen-Alexander True-Dylan Gambrell
Marc-Edouard Vlasic-Erik Karlsson
Brenden Dillon-Brent Burns
Radim Simek-Mario Ferraro
Sharks: F Joel Kellman, F Logan Couture, F Tomas Hertl, D Dalton Prout, F Noah Gregor
Jets: D Tucker Poolman, D Carl Dahlstrom, F Mathieu Perreault, F Adam Lowry, F Bryan Little, F Mark Letestu, D Dustin Byfuglien (suspended)
Sharks: 16.eight% (23rd)
Jets: 19.three% (17th)
Sharks: 85.6% (1st)
Jets: 74.eight% (29th)