The Winnipeg Jets return to Bell MTS Place tonight to face the Pittsburgh Penguins in the Pens only trip to Winnipeg this season…The Jets are coming off a 2-2 four-game road trip last week, which ended with a 8-4 victory against the St. Louis Blues on Saturday…After tonight’s game, the Jets entertain the Chicago Blackhawks on Thursday before heading back on the road for three games.
With an 8-2-2 record as the home team this season, the Jets have an NHL-best home record of 17-2-2 dating back to Mar. 2/18…Winnipeg’s Oct. 24 loss to Toronto was the Jets first regulation loss at Bell MTS Place since Feb. 27/18 vs. NSH…The Jets haven’t lost back-to-back games at Bell MTS Place since Feb. 20-27/18, but are coming off a 2-1 SOL to Buffalo on Nov. 16 in their last home game…Winnipeg has a point in four consecutive home games (3-0-1) after starting the season with a point in six consecutive games (5-0-1).
Dominating the East
The Jets are 5-3-1 against Eastern Conference teams this season and went 19-7-6 against the Eastern Conference last season, including a 10-3-3 record versus the Atlantic Division and 9-4-3 record against the Metropolitan Division.
After racking up 11 goals in four games last week, Patrik Laine is the NHL’s First Star of the Week…He opened the week with a hat trick in a 6-3 victory over the Vancouver Canucks on Monday before scoring twice in a 6-3 loss to the Calgary Flames on Monday and scoring in a 4-2 loss to the Minnesota Wild on Friday…Laine capped the week by setting a franchise record with five goals in a 8-4 victory over the St. Louis Blues on Saturday…This is the fourth time in his career that Laine has been selected as one of the NHL’s Three Stars of the Week and is the third Jets player to be selected in 2018-19 after Winnipeg had eight appearances in the Three Stars of the Week last season…Laine joins Blake Wheeler (Nov. 12 – Second Star) and Mark Scheifele (Oct. 29 – Second Star) as members of the Jets that have earned NHL Three Stars of the Week honours this season.
Record Setting Night
Laine became the 57th player in NHL history to score five goals or more in a game when he did so on Saturday and just the third player to reach the milestone since the 1997-98 season…At 20 years old, Laine is the third player in NHL history to score five goals in a game before his 21st birthday…Even more impressive, Laine scored his five goals on five shots to become the sixth player since the 1959-60 season when shots started to be tracked to score five goals and have a perfect shooting percentage.
Hat Trick Laine
Laine’s hat trick on Saturday was his second hat trick of the week and third in November…Since entering the NHL in 2016, Laine’s seven hat tricks are the most in the league…Despite only playing two-plus seasons in the NHL, Laine’s seven hat tricks are the second most in franchise history and only Wayne Gretzky (12) had more hat tricks in NHL history before the age of 21…Laine is the 14th player in NHL history to record three hat tricks within his team’s first 22 games of the season.
What a Month (and Counting)
Laine has racked up 16 goals in November, which has established a franchise record for most goals in a calendar month…Since the 1987-88 season, the most goals scored in a calendar month by an NHL player in the modern era happened in March of 1993 when Teemu Selanne scored 20 goals in 14 games playing for Jets 1.0 en route to setting the NHL rookie goal scoring record with 76 goals.
Closing in on 100
Laine enters tonight’s game with 99 career goals in 177 games…Laine is poised to become the 10th player to score 100 goals with the Jets franchise…Currently, the fastest player in franchise history to score 100 games is Ilya Kovalchuk, who did so in 209 games…Only six players in NHL history have scored 100 goals before reaching the age of 21.
|Fewest Games to Reach 100 Goals when Starting Career with the Jets Franchise|
|Ilya Kovalchuk||Atlanta Thrashers||209||100||86||186|
|Mark Scheifele||Winnipeg Jets||322||100||147||247|
|Evander Kane||Winnipeg Jets||330||100||103||203|
|Bryan Little||Winnipeg Jets||405||100||128||228|
|Patrik Laine||Winnipeg Jets||177||99||57||156|
800 for the Captain
Blake Wheeler played in his 800th NHL game on Saturday against St. Louis…Since entering the NHL in the 2008-09 season, Wheeler is one of three players to have played in 800 games, joining Andrew Cogliano (809) and Patrick Marleau (804)…Wheeler was drafted fifth overall by the Arizona Coyotes in 2004 and is one of six players from that draft class to reach 800 games played, while sitting third in points with 632 (226G, 406A).
Set Up Man
While Patrik Laine was scoring his 11 goals during the road trip, Kyle Connor was setting him up with seven assists in the four games…He had a career-high four assists on Saturday…All seven of his assists last week came on goals scored by Laine and four of the seven assists were primary assists…Since playing on a line with Laine and Bryan Little, seven of Connor’s nine points have been assists, while he had seven assists in his 15 points this season prior to the switch…After being the trigger man last season with 31 of his 57 points being goals, only 10 of Connor’s 24 points this season are goals.