Zucker, Wild hold on to beat Jets 3-2
Published 8:04 am Friday, January 11, 2019
ST. PAUL — Jason Zucker scored twice, giving Minnesota’s lagging power play a lift with his first goal and getting one later just after leaving the penalty box, and the Wild hung on to beat the Winnipeg Jets 3-2 on Thursday night.
Jordan Greenway also scored and Devan Dubnyk made 26 saves for the Wild, who have won all three games against the Jets so far this season by a combined 10-5 score after losing to their Central Division rival in five games in the first round of the playoffs last spring.
Brandon Tanev gave the Jets some life with his goal in the final minute of the second period to cut the lead to 3-1. Then, with Connor Hellebuyck having already vacated the net, Mark Scheifele scored with 2:38 remaining in the game to bring the Jets within one. The Wild went without a shot on goal in the third, the firwst time in franchise history that happened to them at home in any period.
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The Jets managed just one shot on goal over the first 15-plus minutes of the game, and the Wild actually had a lead to match the effort. Defenseman Jared Spurgeon hustled to keep a loose puck in possession in the offensive zone and sent it along the wall to Staal, who fed Greenway from behind the net . This was only the 15th time in 43 games the Wild have scored first. They’re 9-5-1 in those instances.
The Wild had only one power-play goal in their previous 23 opportunities, all without defenseman Matt Dumba, who’s still second among NHL blue-liners this season with 12 goals and ruptured the pectoralis muscle near his right shoulder on Dec. 15.
Midway through the second period, with a man advantage for the Wild, a turnover led to a short-handed breakaway for the Jets and a snap shot by Adam Lowry that caromed off the left post.