Scheifele powers Jets past Devils with 3-point night
Winnipeg forward scores twice, adds assist
Mark Scheifele figures the pieces of the puzzle are starting to click together for the Winnipeg Jets.
His pair of goals, which gave him a team-leading nine, helped the Jets earn a 5-2 victory over the New Jersey Devils on Sunday. He also had one assist.
"We've been playing the right way," Scheifele said. "We've been in the right spots. Lines are starting to figure out each other. A little more consistent on our routes. That's what we want."
The win follows a 5-2 victory over Colorado on Friday, the first two of a four-game homestand for the Jets (10-5-1).
"It's two solid games for us," said Scheifele, who has seven goals and eight assists in his last nine games. "We're definitely happy to see the results we've got in the last two and we just got to continue to build."
Watch highlight of Winnipeg's win over New Jersey:
Winnipeg, which has shuffled some of its lines recently, also got goals from Jack Roslovic, Nikolaj Ehlers and Mathieu Perreault. Ehlers, who's now on the top line with Scheifele and Blake Wheeler, picked up one assist.
Wheeler contributed a pair of assists, extending his point streak to 10 games (two goals, 17 assists).
Brett Seney, with his first NHL goal, and Blake Coleman replied for New Jersey (6-8-1). Damon Severson had two assists.
Connor Hellebuyck made 34 saves for Winnipeg, which hosts Washington on Wednesday. The netminder echoed Scheifele's assessment of the team.
"We're playing great defensively and it's leading to a whole lot of chances for, and we have the skill to bury on those chances," Hellebuyck said. "We're playing a nice, patient, detailed game and it's fun to play."
Cory Schneider stopped 23 shots for the Devils, who were playing the last game of a season-high seven-game road trip. They only picked up one victory (1-6-0) and have lost three in a row, being outscored 18-6 in the trio of losses.
"It's a pretty brutal road trip coming to an end and we didn't do what it took to win on the road consistently," Devils forward Kyle Palmieri said.
The Jets led 2-1 after the first period and 5-2 following the second.
Winnipeg grabbed a 2-0 lead with a pair of goals 29 seconds apart.
Dustin Byfuglien started it off when he stopped a New Jersey clearing attempt. Roslovic got the loose puck and fired in his first goal of the season at 3:02. With the assist, Byfuglien extended his point streak to six games (one goal, seven assists).
Wheeler set Scheifele up for his eighth goal of the season, a one-timer from the slot that beat Schneider on the glove side at 3:31.
Seney, who hails from London, Ont., and was playing his fifth career game, closed the gap 2-1 at 7:15 with a one-timer off a Jesper Bratt backhand pass.
Scheifele's ninth goal made it 3-1 at 2:58 of the middle frame, but the Devils responded with Coleman's fifth goal 47 seconds later.
With a delayed penalty coming to the Devils, Winnipeg pulled Hellebuyck for an extra attacker. Ehlers used a rebound off a Scheifele shot to score his fourth goal of the season, giving him a goal in three straight games.
Perreault made it 5-2 at 12:47 of the second to finish the game's scoring.
"It just seems like every time we do make a mistake or there's a breakdown, [the puck] just ends up in the back of our net," Devils forward Taylor Hall said. "Unfortunately, it's coming at a tough time and we can't seem to get out of it right now."