It took just one goal to earn the two points tonight as the Winnipeg Jets downed the Phoenix Coyotes 1-0 tonight. Bryan Little notched the game's only goal of the night from Evander Kane and Blake Wheeler.
Ondrej Pavelec turned away all 33 shots that the Coyotes threw at him earning his second shutout of the season. On the other side, Mike Smith also played a great game making 30 of 31 saves in the loss.
"I thought Pavelec played well," said Coach Claude Noel. "I don't think we gave him too much."
"We did a great job on the PK tonight. We deserved to win and it was a great win," said Pavelec. "It always feels good to help the team get a win. It was a great two points."
The Jets will have tomorrow off before they get ready to take on the visiting New Jersey Devils on Saturday night. That game starts at 6:00 pm on CBC.
The Jets drew first blood against the Desert Dogs at 6:53 of the opening period, setting the tone for the match. It all started with a Coyotes turnover in the Jets zone. Blake Wheeler dished the puck to Evander Kane up-ice, creating a 2-on-1 opportunity with Bryan Little. Kane raced in on netminder Mike Smith and snapped a shot on net that beat Smith but just caught the post and shot out. Little was there to pick up the rebound and tuck it just inside the goal post. 1-0 Jets.
Minutes later, Shane Doan was recognized on the scoreboard. Jets fans in the MTS Centre showed their appreciation with a generous standing ovation as Doan lifted his stick to salute his former Winnipeg fans.
Little took the game's first penalty of the game for slashing at 18:16. The Coyotes made a late period push to tie the game but Pavelec and his penalty killers were able to play keep-away until the buzzer went to keep the game scoreless.
Shots after 20 minutes were 11-10 in favour of the visiting 'Yotes.
The pace of the game slowed down through the first half of the second period as the Jets only mustered four shots and the Coyotes six, through ten minutes of play.
Arturs Kulda took a hooking minor at the 7:55 mark of the middle frame but again, the penalty killers did an excellent job of keeping the puck away from the Coyotes and Pavelec was able to keep it out of the net and his team up by one.
Phoenix upped their game slightly as they started to put the pressure on the Jets in the second half. There were chances on both ends of the ice but both goaltenders were excellent at shutting the door.
The Jets were handed their first power play of the game with a minute left on the clock but could not solve Smith, and the game remained 1-0.
Through 40 minutes, the Coyotes led 27-19 on the shot clock.
The Jets were able to catch up in the shots department in the third period but despite the shots on goal from both sides, the score stayed at 1-0. The battle of the goaltenders continued as time wound down on this matchup.
The periods best chance of the game came 8:09 when the Jets were in the middle of a line change. Kane, holding the puck, barged his way through four Coyotes players and was able to throw a wrist shot on net. Smith fumbled the puck but managed to keep it out. Kane was however able to draw a hooking call on the play and the Jets went back to the man advantage.
A few close calls near the buzzer but Pavelec shut the door on the 'Yotes. That's how this one would end, as the hometown Jets held on for the 1-0 victory over the Phoenix Coyotes helping Pavelec earn his second shutout of the season.