The Colorado Avalanche now have just three regulation wins in their past 24 games, falling even further down the standings after being blown out by the Winnipeg Jets.
It was a bad game for the entire Avalanche team, with their only goal coming with just 15 seconds left in the game. The power play continued to struggle as they extended their power play goal drought that began on February 14.
The Jets, however, were firing on all cylinders. Every line was able to get into the game and contribute, while Connor Hellebuyck was just 15 seconds away from his second straight shutout. He has a .981 save percentage over his past two games since being pulled against the Minnesota Wild.
#NHLJets move within two points of LA Kings and within one of St. Louis with second straight win. 5-1-2 in last eight games.
— Ted Wyman (@Ted_Wyman) March 5, 2017
The Jets showed absolutely no signs of having played the day before and came out on fire. It took less than four minutes for the Jets to capitalize. Patrik Laine carried the puck into the zone before turning back towards the blue line. As everyone got set up in the defensive zone, Laine turned back towards the net before blasting a slap shot past Calvin Pickard.
The Jets got a power play halfway through the period and went to work. Blake Wheeler carried it in and sent it down low to Bryan Little, who came out front but then faked it back to Wheeler, who outwaited the goalie and sniped it from the top of the circle.
The young guns made it 3-0 when Nikolaj Ehlers took the puck down the wing before lifting it across to Laine. The rookie sensation toe-dragged it to fake a shot, then sent a slick feed to Scheifele near the goal line, who buried it past a desperate Pickard.
The Avalanche couldn’t catch a break, going down by two men and giving the Jets over a minute and a half of five-on-three. Two great blocks by Landeskog and some great sticks killed the penalties off before a tripping call on Laine right near the end of the period swung some of the momentum back to the Avalanche.
The Avalanche started off the second period on the power play and weren’t able to generate any chances. A second penalty right near the end of Laine’s gave Colorado a two-man advantage for a couple of seconds, but they still couldn’t score or even get set up at any point.
The futility continued for the Avs when Blake Wheeler sprung Nikolaj Ehlers with a breakout pass. Ehlers wound up for a slapshot that fooled two Avalanche players and a couple of Jets players, before passing it to Chiarot in the slot, who walked freely to the front of the net and deposited it past a sprawling Pickard.
The agony continued with Wheeler drawing the entire Avalanche team over to him before sending it to a wide open Ehlers, who put it into an open net. That spelled the end of Pickard’s night, as he got pulled in his hometown.
The Avalanche had a chance to respond on a breakaway, but they did this.
The #Avs season summed up in one GIF. pic.twitter.com/jR5LIvdsYj
— GameTimeArt (@GameTimeArt) March 5, 2017
When the score gets this far apart, games start to get nasty, and this one did. Joe Colborne stuck a knee out on Andrew Copp in the neutral zone, which knocked Copp out for the rest of the period, but no penalty was called. Once the whistle blew, the Jets went after him.
Copp was back on the Jets’ bench to start the third period, much to the relief of Paul Maurice and Jets fans. The third started the same way the second ended, with the Jets dominating play.
The Avalanche started to get some chances on net, including one shift that saw a good two or three solid chances at the net. But much like the rest of the game, they couldn’t sustain the pressure and ended up back in their own end.
It somehow got worse for the Avs. Jacob Trouba picked off a pass and on a bad line change by the Avalanche, walked into the zone and fired a shot at Jeremy Smith. It was up and over the net, but it rebounded to the side of the net where Trouba went untouched and put it in for the Jets’ sixth goal.
The game ended 6-1 for the home team, and Hellebuyck made 22 saves. The Jets played a good game, but the game could probably be best described with this tweet.
— Jeff (@Rosabergg) March 5, 2017
WPG – Patrik Laine (32) assisted by Mathieu Perreault (21) and Dustin Byfuglien (34)
WPG – Blake Wheeler (20) (PP) assisted by Bryan Little (16) and Dustin Byfuglien (35)
WPG – Mark Scheifele (27) assisted by Patrik Laine (26) and Nikolaj Ehlers (30)
WPG – Ben Chiarot (1) assisted by Nikolaj Ehlers (31) and Blake Wheeler (35)
WPG – Nikolaj Ehlers (21) assisted by Blake Wheeler (36)
WPG – Jacob Trouba (6) unassisted
COL – Gabriel Landeskog (14) assisted by Cody Goloubef (4)
THW Three Stars
First: Blake Wheeler (1 goal, 2 assists)
Second: Nikolaj Ehlers (1 goal, 2 assists)
Third: Connor Hellebuyck (22 saves)
San Jose Sharks at Winnipeg Jets
MTS Centre – 7:00 p.m. CT on Monday, March 6
Broadcast Channels: TSN3
2016-17 Season Series: Jan. 16 – Winnipeg (2) at San José (5)
Jan. 24 – San José (4) at Winnipeg (3)
St. Louis Blues at Colorado Avalanche
Pepsi Center – 6:00 p.m. MT on Sunday, March 5
Broadcast Channels: NBCSN
2016-17 Season Series: Nov. 6 – Colorado (1) at St. Louis (5)