Celebrations on Hold (Stars Aligned; 04.11.24)

Ross James/ALOST

akoiki-passport2 – by Adesina O. Koiki
A Lot of Sports Talk editor-in-chief

DALLAS — Finally, the Winnipeg Jets got the best of the team that almost surely will rule the roost in the Central Division, and put celebrations on hold in the process.

Goalkeeper Laurent Brossoit continued his sizzling play, stopping all 24 shots he faced, as the Jets scored a single goal in each period to defeat the Dallas Stars 3-0 inside American Airlines Center on Thursday evening. Nikolaj Ehlers’ unassisted goal late in the first period was the only goal the Winnipeg would need as the Jets won for the first time in four meetings this season against Dallas.

The win also prevented the Stars from clinching the Central Division title, as both the Jets and Colorado Avalanche now have 104 points with three games remaining, five points behind a Dallas team that now has two games left in the regular season.

“That’s the way we want to play the game,” said Jets head coach Rick Bowness, who coached the Stars from 2019 to 2022 and led Dallas to the 2021 Stanley Cup Final. “That teams a good hockey team over there. We knew we needed to bring our A-game out there every shift, and we did. That’s the way we want to play.”

Ehlers, who has seen his ice time reduced over the past few games, capitalized on the sustained pressure Winnipeg applied in a passage of play late in the first period by backhanding a puck that bounced to him in the slot past Stars goalkeeper Jake Oettinger at the 14:51 mark of the first.

David Gustafsson, on his 24th birthday, deflected a Sylan Samberg shot past Oettinger at 9:20 of the second period to double the Jets’ advantage. Mark Scheifele added an empty net goal in the third.

Dallas was not able to mount much of an attack on the Winnipeg defense and Brossoit, who did not face more than nine shots in any of the three periods. Brossoit recorded his third shutout in his last five starts.

“Their consistency throughout the game and our defensive structure was great. We know that they are dangerous off the rush, and it seemed that we took that away for the most part,” Brossoit said. “In the defensive zone, we did not give them much, and in the rebounds they gave up, our guys were the first to the puck. It was consistent all 60 minutes.”

*Editor’s note: Above the byline is the photo gallery from Thursday evening’s contest, with photos taken by Dallas-area photographer Ross James. After clicking on the first photo to enlarge the picture, make sure to press the left and right arrow buttons to scroll through the rest of the pictures. There are 22 pictures in total.

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Tags : Dallas StarsNational Hockey LeagueWinnipeg Jets

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