WINNIPEG - Last night, the Winnipeg Jets looked more like a group of guys who closed down a bunch of bars on Nashville’s Broadway Street than the team that look the Washington Capitals to overtime on Tuesday, falling 5-2 to the Predators at Bridgestone Arena.
Before the first period was over, Nashville jumped out to a 3-0 lead with goals from Eeli Tolvanen, Mikael Granlund, and Ryan Johansen. Early in the second, the Jets showed signs of life when Pierre-Luc Dubois scored his 17th goal of the season, but less than six minutes later, the Predators restored their three goal lead when Luke Kunin beat the once again struggling Connor Hellebuyck. Mark Scheifele gave Jets fans some hope early in the third, beating Juuse Saros. The Finish-born goaltender was strong between the pipes, making 36 saves for the Nashville win, while Hellebucyk only made 18 saves on the 22 shots he faced. Winnipeg was the better team during the third period, but couldn’t capitalize even with Hellebuyck on the bench for the extra skater. Tanner Jeannot put an empty netter in with 21 seconds to go.
The Jets, who are now 17-13-6 on the season, next see action Saturday afternoon in Boston. Puck drop is at 2pm (SNW, 680 CJOB/Power 97). Blake Wheeler may be back in the Winnipeg lineup after missing over a month of action.