The Jets boarded their flight out of town after picking up exactly what they came for. It wasn’t pretty, but it worked.
After quickly falling behind on Winnipeg native Jonathan Toews’ 34th goal of the season on an early Blackhawks’ man advantage, the Jets responded with three quick goals. Adam Lowry tied the game with his third goal in three games midway through the frame, before Jack Roslovic picked up his eighth goal of the season on a blind ‘turn and fire’ kind of shot from the corner of the offensive zone.
Roslovic’s second goal of the game came on a much prettier of a play in the second period of play. The 22-year-old finished off a nice in-zone setup by wiring his ninth of the year top shelf past Corey Crawford on a perfectly placed wrist shot from the high slot. Mid-season trade acquisition Dylan Strome then found his 19th goal of the season with just two minutes left to play in the second.
Up 3-2 with 3:14 to play in the third period, Kyle Connor and Blake Wheeler teamed up to find Mark Scheifele, who potted his 37th goal of the season – or so the Winnipeg Jets thought. The Blackhawks challenged for offside, and won the argument. Less than one minute later Strome scored his second of the game, sending Tuesday’s matchup into overtime.
After a high-paced back-and-forth opening three minutes of the extra frame, Winnipeg’s major trade deadline pickup provided the game-winner on an excellent solo effort. After carrying the puck into the Chicago zone, Kevin Hayes put a couple moves on his defender, before carrying the puck to the goal and beating Crawford for the 4-3 overtime winner.
“It’s really good,” said Jets’ Head Coach Paul Maurice following Monday’s game. “Especially because the coach was screaming at him to get off the ice for about 30 seconds until he went down and scored. I love the confidence.”
The game-winner was Hayes’ first career regular season overtime marker, and propelled the Jets back into first place in the NHL’s Central Division. Now sitting at 96 points, Winnipeg has three road contests left to finish the 2018-19 regular season. Both the Nashville Predators and St. Louis Blues are sitting at 94 points, while also having skated in 79 games to date. Winnipeg now travels to Minnesota for a 7:00 PM central showdown with the Wild Tuesday evening. The game will be available to view on TSN3.