Scheifele scores twice, adds assist to power Jets to rout of Senators
Ehlers, Wheeler, Perfetti also score for Winnipeg in 5-1 road win
After a 5-1 victory over the Ottawa Senators on Saturday night it's easy to see why the Winnipeg Jets are one of the best teams in the Western Conference.
The Jets (30-16-1) came into the game having lost the first two games of their five-game road trip and from the start it was clear they didn't intend to lose a third.
Winnipeg's forecheck was impressive and Ottawa had no response.
Nikolaj Ehlers and Cole Perfetti also scored for Winnipeg, while Connor Hellebuyck stopped 25 shots.
Ehlers, who missed 36 games with an abdominal injury, now has 12 points (4G, 8A) in his past nine games since returning to the lineup.
"He's a fantastic player for us, and he played great for us tonight, too," said Scheifele. "We need him with his 'A' game for us to win. He was fantastic again tonight, and still only a few games in from him coming back."
WATCH l Jets breeze past Senators 5-1:
Josh Norris scored the lone goal for the Senators (20-23-3), who continue to struggle defensively. Anton Forsberg made 25 saves.
If body language is any indication frustration is at an all-time high among players right now. Thomas Chabot was asked what the mood is like and he was blunt.
"It's not good," Chabot said. "No one's happy right now, but, I mean, it's the game of hockey and they were the better team tonight and that's it."
The Senators were coming off a 4-1 loss to Pittsburgh on Friday, while the Jets were waiting for them in Ottawa.
Ottawa is now 2-6-0 in its last eight and appear to be trending in the wrong direction.
Not surprisingly Senators head coach D.J. Smith said changes will be made.
"We're going to shuffle the top nine," said Smith. "I mean there's guys that are minus every night and it just can't continue. That's on me for allowing them to keep playing together or certain guys to play together and if you're getting scored on it's not working, so we're going to work on every line and we're going to grind our way out of this."
Ottawa showed a lack of discipline taking eight minor penalties and were fortunate the Jets only capitalized once with the man advantage, but they were just as dangerous at full strength.
"We haven't had that for a while, obviously, the last couple of games," said Jets head coach Rick Bowness. "We talked about it before the game, `We need a greasy goal here from our forwards.' And then [Wheeler] goes to the net, [Ehlers] puts it in around there, and [Wheeler] gets his screws in. We haven't had one of those for a while. You just need one of those sometimes to get you going 5-on-5."
Leading 3-1 to start the third the Jets seemed in full control as Ottawa looked uninspired for stretches.
Scheifele takes control
Despite a full house Senators fans had little to cheer about and headed for the exits as Scheifele scored his second of the game with just under four minutes remaining.
Perfetti's goal late in the period, which put the Jets up 5-1, had no impact on the game, but was memorable for Wheeler, as an assist gave him 900 career points.
Winnipeg scored twice in the second and dominated play for much of the period.
The Jets opened the scoring at the six-minute mark of the period on the power play when Ehlers took a feed from Josh Morrissey and tapped it in for his fourth of the season.
Ottawa tied it midway through the period with Claude Giroux winning the offensive zone faceoff and feeding Norris, who one-timed it past Hellebuyck, who didn't look ready for the shot.
With the assist Giroux reached 40 points for the 14th consecutive season.
Giroux reached 40 points for the 14th consecutive season.
To encourage thoughtful and respectful conversations, first and last names will appear with each submission to CBC/Radio-Canada's online communities (except in children and youth-oriented communities). Pseudonyms will no longer be permitted.
By submitting a comment, you accept that CBC has the right to reproduce and publish that comment in whole or in part, in any manner CBC chooses. Please note that CBC does not endorse the opinions expressed in comments. Comments on this story are moderated according to our Submission Guidelines. Comments are welcome while open. We reserve the right to close comments at any time.
Become a CBC Account Holder
Join the conversation Create account
Already have an account?