A Nikita Zaitsev point shot with 1:13 left in the third period gave the Ottawa Senators a 2-1 win over the Winnipeg Jets Monday night. The loss for the Jets moves their losing streak in regulation to 7 games, the longest since the franchise moved to Winnipeg.
Winnipeg had their opportunities, including a 10-minute stretch to open the second period where they outshot Ottawa 11-0. They also finished the night 0-for-6 on the powerplay despite 13 shots on goal with the man advantage.
Filip Gustavsson was the one making life difficult for the Jets as he made 25 straight saves before Winnipeg broke his shutout midway through the third period. He finished the night with 28 saves as the Jets outshot Ottawa 29-18 in the game. It was the rookie goalie’s first start since April 1 and just the fifth of his career.
Ottawa forward Connor Brown opened the scoring with a shorthanded effort at the 8:30 mark of the first period. Teammate Nick Paul was able to beat Winnipeg’s Neal Pionk and Paul Stastny to find Brown in front of the net, wristing it over the blocker of Jets goaltender Laurent Brossoit. That was Brown’s fourth shorthanded goal of the season and moved his point streak against Winnipeg to five games.
While taking a 1-0 lead into the break, Ottawa would lose a key player in the period. Defenceman Thomas Chabot took a hit from Jets blue-liner Logan Stanley around eight minutes into the game and he would not return due to an upper-body injury.
The Jets did everything but score in the second period. Winnipeg opened the frame by outshooting Ottawa 11-0 in the first ten minutes and 17-4 for the period.
But they still could not get one past Gustavsson as the score remained 1-0 for Ottawa through 40 minutes.
Winnipeg would finally break through midway through the third period. On a four-on-four situation, a point shot from Josh Morrissey just barely got past Gustavsson to even the game at a goal apiece. Morrissey also led the game with nine shots on goal.
But Ottawa would find a way to retake their lead. Zaitsev’s game-winner came on a slap shot from the blueline that went through two Jets players and over the shoulder of Brossoit with just over a minute left to play.
Brossoit made 16 saves on 18 Ottawa shots in the loss, his first start since April 14.
Winnipeg’s loss combined with Montreal’s 3-2 overtime win against Toronto means the Jets (27-21-3) and Canadiens (24-18-9) are even in the standings at 57 points through 51 games.
The Jets look to end the losing skid as they close out their three-game road trip on Wednesday night against the Calgary Flames. You can listen to the game live on 680 CJOB with Kelly Moore, Paul Edmonds, and Jamie Thomas with the pregame show starting at 6:30 p.m. and puck drop just after 8:30 p.m.
Adam Lowry was back on his usual line with Andrew Copp and Mason Appleton as he made his return to the Jets lineup.
Lowry last played April 22 against Toronto, leaving that contest after taking a hit from Maple Leafs forward Alex Galchenyuk.
The 28-year-old centre played 17:57 with 3 hits, 2 shots on goal and went 67 per cent in the faceoff circle.