Flames Score Five Straight Goals To Whip Winnipeg
CALGARY, AB. — The Winnipeg Jets took a 3-1 lead into the second period in Calgary on Saturday night.
By the end of the evening, the Flames had scored five straight goals and, as a result, they whipped the Jets 6-3.
With the loss, the Jets fell 0-2-0-0 on the season and no doubt questions are already being asked. The arguments will obviously go on all season but it’s apparent, after the first two games of the 2017-18 campaign, do the Jets have a defensive problem or a goaltending problem?
In two games this season, the Jets have lost 7-2 at home to Toronto and 6-3 to the Flames in Calgary. Giving up 13 goals in two games just won’t cut it and the Jets obviously have an issue.
“We had a little difficult time moving the puck and I think they got a little faster,” said Jets head coach Paul Maurice. “They closed some time and space on space on us and we had a difficult time making the adjustment that you have to go hard and fast in this league and they won’t slow down for you. We got a little bit slow, got real slow, slow with the puck and ended up having to play in an area we’re not real good at right now.”
Johnny Gaudreau had a goal and three assists while TJ Brodie had two goals and two assists as they led the Flames comeback.
Brandon Tanev, Mark Scheifele and Patrik Laine scored in the first period for Winnipeg as the Jets played well and took a 3-1 lead. However, Calgary came back with four unanswered goals in the second period and the Jets were done.
“We have to realize what gives us success as a group,” said Jets defenseman Tyler Myers. “We can take a look at that first period and try and build off of that, but we’ve got to break that habit of trying to do something more when things get a little tight.”
It would pretty tough to blame Jets goaltender Steve Mason for this one. The Jets were outshot 45-28. Calgary outshot the Jets 15-11 in the first period, 13-12 in the second and 17-5 in the third as Winnipeg just mailed it in during the final 20 minutes.
It was a tough night for Joel Armia, who was minus-two in just eight minutes and 12 seconds of ice time. Defenseman Dustin Byfuglien logged the most ice time for the Jets, as usual – 25 minutes and two seconds. He was minus one with a shot, a hit, two blocked shots and two giveaways. The Jets were outhit 15-11 but won 53 per cent of the faceoffs. Mathieu Perreault had two assists for Winnipeg.
Mike Smith made 25 saves to get the win in net for Calgary.
The Jets play again on Monday night in Edmonton. The Oilers beat Calgary 3-0 in the opener for those two teams this past week. It will be another test for the Jets who are struggling to start the season.
Game time on Monday is 8 p.m. and it’s on TSN3.
—Scott Taylor, MyToba Sports
Photo – James Carey Lauder, MyToba Sports