Panthers fall to Jets, snap five-game win streak
WINNIPEG, Manitoba (AP) — Evander Kane, Michael Frolik and Jacob Trouba each had a goal and an assist, helping the Winnipeg Jets cool off the Florida Panthers with a 5-2 victory on Friday night.
Toby Enstrom and Blake Wheeler also scored for Winnipeg in its first home win since Nov. 15. Ondrej Pavelec made 21 saves.
Shawn Matthias and Nick Bjugstad scored for the tired-looking Panthers, who had won five in a row, including a 4-2 victory at Ottawa on Thursday night. Both goals were unassisted, a product of giveaways by the Jets deep in their own zone.
Winnipeg came out fast and dominated the opening minutes. But the Panthers got on the board first when Dustin Byfuglien’s attempt to raise a clearing pass bounced off Matthias and he snapped one in at 7:45.
Trouba then tied it with his soft tip at 11:06 of the penalty-filled first. It looked as if Florida goaltender Jacob Markstrom kicked it into his net with his skate as he scrambled to block the puck.
Winnipeg grabbed control with two goals in a 33-second span late in the period. Enstrom converted a 5-on-3 chance from the slot at 15:24, and Wheeler then scored on the man-advantage when he deflected Zach Bogosian’s shot past Markstrom.
It was Bogosian’s first game since that last home-ice win Nov. 15. He was out with what is thought to have been a groin injury.
Kane flipped in Frolik’s pass to make it 4-1 just 1:03 into the second as the pair grabbed just enough space for a 2-on-1.
Bjugstad then got Florida back into the game with a wrist shot at 5:55 of the second before Frolik restored Winnipeg’s three-goal lead when he snapped in Andrew Ladd’s rebound.
NOTES: Winnipeg’s Mark Scheifele had two assists to extend his point streak to five games, the longest active streak among NHL rookies. He has collected 12 points over the last 12 games, dating to Nov. 23.