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Winnipeg Jets

Jets Cap Off Home Preseason Schedule With Loss to Oilers

By Carter Brooks

Photos by James Carey Lauder

Connor McDavid made his preseason debut for the Edmonton Oilers on Thursday in Winnipeg after suffering a leg injury in Edmonton’s final game of the 2018-19 season.

Jets Cap Off Home Preseason Schedule With Loss to Oilers

His presence was felt quite quickly as the league’s best forward chipped in with a goal in the Oilers’ 5-3 road victory over the Jets from Bell MTS Place on a rainy Thursday evening.

Winnipeg opened the scoring on a nifty play from CJ Suess, who showcased some high-level hand-eye coordination in batting a Joona Luoto cross-ice feed past Mike Smith and into the Oilers’ net. The 1-0 goal was Suess’ second of the preseason.

Edmonton answered back with less than five minutes to play, as Tomas Jurco capitalized on a brutal Mathieu Perreault defensive zone turnover. James Neal picked up the lone assist on the play. Winnipeg led 6-4 in the shots department after 20 minutes of play.


Perreault’s run of bad luck continued early in the second, as the veteran forward found himself in the sin bin on a high sticking minor. Just 32 seconds into the penalty, Connor McDavid was gifted with an easy cross-ice tap in, giving the Oilers a 2-1 lead just one minute into the frame. Neal and Jurco collected their second points of the game on the play.

Winnipeg tied the game back up on a Tucker Poolman garbage goal on the heels of a goalmouth scramble just four minutes after Edmonton’s go-ahead marker. Poolman was back at again, picking up the secondary assist on a Gabriel Bourque goal, made possible by a strong Mathieu Perreault forecheck. Through 40 minutes of play, the Jets led the Oilers 3-2, while also taking a hold of the shot lead 18-11. 


The Jets, however, squandered their lead once and for all in the third frame, giving up three goals to the Oilers in a span of 10 minutes in the third. Ethan Bear of nearby Whitewood, Saskatchewan collected two markers in the final period of play, while Jurco added another on a mid-period power play, doing the Jets in by a count of 5-3.

Bear had two goals, Jurco had two goals and an assist, while Neal and Leon Draisaitl each had two helpers in the victory. Poolman led the way for Winnipeg with a goal and an assist. Despite heavily outshooting the visitors 18-11 through two periods, the Jets gave up a whopping 15 shots in the third period, while counteracting with just three, ultimately losing the shot battle 26-21. Connor Hellebuyck made 21 stops, while Mike Smith turned aside 18 pucks.

With the loss, Winnipeg is now 2-3-1 in the preseason, and will look to finish off the exhibition season with a .500 record, as the Jets take on the Minnesota Wild at 1:00 PM Sunday at Excel Energy Center in St. Paul, Minnesota. The final preseason tune up can be viewed live on TSN3. 

Carter Brooks - Associate Editor of Game On Magazine - is a news writer and sports columnist situated in Winnipeg, MB. On top of reading and writing, his favourite pastimes include camping, car-modification projects and coaching hockey. Carter can be reached at

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