Winnipeg Jets Worried Over Knee Injury
WINNIPEG – SPORTS – The Winnipeg Jets easily blew past the Arizona Coyotes on Thursday night. However the victory, a 6-2 win could be costly for the Jets as forward Evander Kane was injured. Kane collided with Mark Scheifele early in the first period, and the two hit smashing knee to knee. Kane fell to the ice clutching his right knee. The sniper skated one short shift before leaving the game for good.
“It’s a lower body and we’ll find out a lot more tomorrow,” Winnipeg coach Paul Maurice said. “He’s going to have to see the doctors and I’m not going to speculate. He was moving after [the game] so that’s a positive. We’ll see.”
The game got off to a fast paced start before the Jets took full command.
Seven minutes into the game, Jets captain Andrew Ladd scooped up a turnover by Joe Vitale, went in 2-on-1 and fed Little for a wrist shot that beat Smith over the glove.
The Coyotes answered 38 seconds later when Shane Doan set up Boedker from behind the net, and Boedker, who had had 19 goals last season, picked the top corner to tie the game.
“We got back to 1-1 and I thought we were OK,” Tippett said. “Then and we gave up a couple of quick ones and we were chasing the game.”
Actually, they were chasing Wheeler.
Fifty-five seconds after Boedker’s goal, Wheeler pulled a puck off the half boards and threw it toward the net. The shot fooled Smith and slid into the net at 8:33 to put the Jets ahead to stay.
Wheeler, who led the Jets last season with 28 goals, needed only 15 seconds to score again. Dustin Byfuglien tipped a faceoff back to Zach Bogosian for a shot from the point. Wheeler got a stick on the drive, tipped it past Smith and the rout was on.
“Blake is just a big powerful man,” Maurice said. “He gets up and down that ice with so much speed … and I think he’s started to really settle into his game. Going back to last year, he has a really good understanding of what makes him good and he just does that.”
EARLIER ON Thursday:
The Winnipeg Jets announced they have re-assigned forward Eric O’Dell to the St. John’s IceCaps of the American Hockey League.
O’Dell, 24, appeared in 30 games with the Jets last season compiling seven points (3G, 4A) and 10 penalty minutes. He is a former scoring leader with the St. John’s IceCaps pacing the team with 55 points (29G, 26A) in 2012-13. In his AHL career, O’Dell has 119 points (58G, 61A) over 143 games with Chicago and St. John’s. The Ottawa, ON native was originally drafted by the Anaheim Ducks in the second round, 29th overall, in the 2008 NHL Entry Draft.