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Beyak: Jets power play struggles in loss to Penguins

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Dennis Beyak
3/29/2013 2:49:18 AM
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The Winnipeg Jets' 4-0 loss to the Pittsburgh Penguins saw both teams with some early chances, but it remained scoreless until Pittsburgh scored two in the final five minutes of the first. Chris Kunitz made it 1-0 with his 20th of the season, and with under a minute and a half left Evgeny Malkin made it a 2-0 game. The goal was reviewed to confirm it was not kicked in.  Pascal Dupuis scored two in the second, one of which was short-handed, to make it 4-0 after two and that's the way it ended.

Tomas Vokoun stopped 20 shots for the shutout, while at the other end, Al Montoya was great as the Jets gave up a season high 43 shots. Hitting the net remains an issue for Winnipeg. They finished with 20 shots on goal with 15 shots wide and 13 blocked.

It was a tough night for the power play with not only the goal against, but the Jets also had a five-on-three for almost a full two minutes in the third and could not score. The Jets are now 0-5 this year when being up two men. The penalty kill had an easy night as the Jets did not take a penalty.

Andrew Ladd had his streak of not going more than one game without a point snapped, leaving Malkin, Kunitz and Marty St. Louis as the only players in the league in that category.

“We are going to move by this game,” said head coach Claude Noel. “We will assess it, but not dwell on it. We have another game Saturday. If we could have got one in the first, it would have helped. I didn't like our second. We play well when our whole group is engaged in the game.”

As for starting Montoya over Ondrej Pavelec, Noel said: “He may have been our best player. He played extremely well."

And on Pittsburgh: "They are a very good team. You can see who drives their team. We didn't get a lot of “A” games.”

The Jets now return to the MTS Centre for a Saturday afternoon game against the Carolina Hurricanes (TSN Jets, TSN 1290, puck drop 2 PM). Winnipeg still leads Carolina by six points for top spot in the Southeast, as the Hurricanes lost 6-3 in Toronto.

After Saturday it's right back on the road for three, the final game of the trip in Montreal a day after the trade deadline. Saturday's game starts a run of four in six days.

Tomas Vokoun Pascal Dupuis (Photo: The Canadian Press)

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(Photo: The Canadian Press)
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