Keeping it simple is starting to pay off for Marko Dano.
The 21-year-old scored twice and added an assist Monday as the visiting Winnipeg Jets thumped the Vancouver Canucks 5-2.
Acquired in the deal that sent Jets captain Andrew Ladd to Chicago before the NHL trade deadline, Dano was held pointless in his first five games with Winnipeg, but now has three goals and two assists over his last four while playing in a top-six role.
"When I came here I was trying to impress and I was probably trying too much," said Dano. "When you're trying too much, the goals [won't] come for you. When you stop thinking about it and play your simple game, the goals come and you don't even know how."
Monday was the second three-point game of Dano's career, with the other coming last March when he had an identical stat line in Vancouver while playing for Columbus.
"He's been getting better and better," said Jets defenceman Tyler Myers, who had a goal and an assist. "He's been a really good addition for us."
Alexander Burmistrov also chipped in with a goal and an assist for Winnipeg (29-35-5), while Mark Scheifele scored to extend his point streak to eight games. Mathieu Perrault added two assists for the Jets, who got 26 saves from Michael Hutchinson.
'In the morning skate I could tell we were light ... like we could come to the rink and good things were going to happen. It never works that way.' - Canucks head coach Willie Desjardins after his team's 5-2 loss to Winnipeg
Jared McCann and Jake Virtanen replied for Vancouver (27-29-12). Jacob Markstrom stopped 24 shots for the Canucks, who came in having won two in a row, but failed to put together a three-game winning streak for the eighth time this season.
"In the morning skate I could tell we were light, thinking good things were going to start happening, like we could come to the rink and good things were going to happen," said Vancouver head coach Willie Desjardins. "It never works that way."
With both teams destined to miss the playoffs, the Canucks came out strong and led 7-1 on the shot clock only to see Winnipeg go up 1-0 at 4:28 of the first when Dano deflected a Myers feed for his third of the season.
"I'm getting more comfortable with every game, every shift," said Dano. "Trying to get the chemistry going, that's key for a new guy in the room."
Markstrom made a couple good saves to keep the Canucks' deficit at one, but was beaten cleanly between the pads with 3:15 left when Myers' centring pass deflected in off Vancouver's Derek Dorsett for his ninth.
Hutchinson, who wasn't tested much after the Canucks' initial surge, made an excellent desperation stop on Sven Baertschi early in the second to keep his team up by two.
"In both the first and second period their team came out with a lot of jump, got some chances early, but then after that we took it to them," said Hutchinson. "I was bored for three quarters of [each] period."
Winnipeg put the game out of reach with 2:20 left in the second when Burmistrov beat Markstrom for his seventh before Scheifele extended his point streak 2:53 into the third with his team-leading 23rd.