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Winnipeg Free Press - ONLINE EDITION

Jets' overtime win against Oilers shows power of youth

Posted: 01/18/2014 6:02 PM | Comments: 0

Last Modified: 01/18/2014 10:55 PM | Updates

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  • Edmonton Oilers' Jordan Eberle (14) celebrates with Sam Gagner (89) after scoring against the Winnipeg Jets during NHL hockey action at MTS Centre in Winnipeg Saturday.

    Trevor Hagan / Winnipeg Free Press

    Edmonton Oilers' Jordan Eberle (14) celebrates with Sam Gagner (89) after scoring against the Winnipeg Jets during NHL hockey action at MTS Centre in Winnipeg Saturday.

  • Winnipeg Jets' Olli Jokinen (12), Andrew Ladd (16) and Bryan Little (18) plan out the next play against the Edmonton Oilers during the game's second period Saturday at MTS Centre in Winnipeg.

    Trevor Hagan / Winnipeg Free Press

    Winnipeg Jets' Olli Jokinen (12), Andrew Ladd (16) and Bryan Little (18) plan out the next play against the Edmonton Oilers during the game's second period Saturday at MTS Centre in Winnipeg.

  • Winnipeg Jets' Dustin Byfuglien (33) drives to the net past Edmonton Oilers' Jeff Petry (2) during second period NHL hockey action at MTS Centre in Winnipeg on Saturday.

    Trevor Hagan / Winnipeg Free Press

    Winnipeg Jets' Dustin Byfuglien (33) drives to the net past Edmonton Oilers' Jeff Petry (2) during second period NHL hockey action at MTS Centre in Winnipeg on Saturday.

  • Edmonton Oilers' goaltender Ilya Bryzgalov makes an uncertain save on a drive by Winnipeg Jets' Dustin Byfuglien (33) in the second period of Saturday's NHL hockey game in Winnipeg.

    Trevor Hagan / Winnipeg Free Press

    Edmonton Oilers' goaltender Ilya Bryzgalov makes an uncertain save on a drive by Winnipeg Jets' Dustin Byfuglien (33) in the second period of Saturday's NHL hockey game in Winnipeg.

  • Edmonton Oilers' goaltender Ilya Bryzgalov (80) stops Winnipeg Jets' Anthony Peluso (14) as he drives between Oilers' Martin Marincin (85) and Jeff Petry (2) during the second period Saturday.

    Trevor Hagan / Winnipeg Free Press

    Edmonton Oilers' goaltender Ilya Bryzgalov (80) stops Winnipeg Jets' Anthony Peluso (14) as he drives between Oilers' Martin Marincin (85) and Jeff Petry (2) during the second period Saturday.

  • Winnipeg Jets' Anthony Peluso (14) had a shot stopped by Edmonton Oilers' goaltender Ilya Bryzgalov (80) in the second period of Saturday's NHL game at Winnipeg's MTS Centre.

    Trevor Hagan / Winnipeg Free Press

    Winnipeg Jets' Anthony Peluso (14) had a shot stopped by Edmonton Oilers' goaltender Ilya Bryzgalov (80) in the second period of Saturday's NHL game at Winnipeg's MTS Centre.

  • Winnipeg Jets' Andrew Ladd (16) drives past Edmonton Oilers' Martin Marincin (85) during second-period NHL play in Winnipeg Saturday afternoon.

    Trevor Hagan / Winnipeg Free Press

    Winnipeg Jets' Andrew Ladd (16) drives past Edmonton Oilers' Martin Marincin (85) during second-period NHL play in Winnipeg Saturday afternoon.

  • Winnipeg Jets' Jacob Trouba (8) ends up in the net past Edmonton Oilers' goaltender Ilya Bryzgalov (80) during the second period of Saturday's NHL game in Winnipeg.

    Trevor Hagan / Winnipeg Free Press

    Winnipeg Jets' Jacob Trouba (8) ends up in the net past Edmonton Oilers' goaltender Ilya Bryzgalov (80) during the second period of Saturday's NHL game in Winnipeg.

  • Edmonton Oilers' goaltender Ilya Bryzgalov (80) plays against the Winnipeg Jets during second period NHL hockey action at MTS Centre in Winnipeg.

    Trevor Hagan / Winnipeg Free Press

    Edmonton Oilers' goaltender Ilya Bryzgalov (80) plays against the Winnipeg Jets during second period NHL hockey action at MTS Centre in Winnipeg.

  • Winnipeg Jets' Andrew Ladd (16) clings to the boards after Edmonton Oilers' Anton Belov (77) takes him down during second period NHL hockey action at MTS Centre in Winnipeg Saturday.

    Trevor Hagan / Winnipeg Free Press

    Winnipeg Jets' Andrew Ladd (16) clings to the boards after Edmonton Oilers' Anton Belov (77) takes him down during second period NHL hockey action at MTS Centre in Winnipeg Saturday.

  • Edmonton Oilers' Anton Belov (77) takes down Winnipeg Jets' Andrew Ladd (16) in the second period of Saturday's NHL game at Winnipeg's MTS Centre.

    TREVOR HAGAN/WINNIPEG FREE PRESS

    Edmonton Oilers' Anton Belov (77) takes down Winnipeg Jets' Andrew Ladd (16) in the second period of Saturday's NHL game at Winnipeg's MTS Centre.

  • Winnipeg Jets' Chris Thorburn (22) carries the puck in front of Edmonton Oilers' Boyd Gordon (27) and Anton Belov (77) during second period in Winnipeg Saturday.

    TREVOR HAGAN/WINNIPEG FREE PRESS

    Winnipeg Jets' Chris Thorburn (22) carries the puck in front of Edmonton Oilers' Boyd Gordon (27) and Anton Belov (77) during second period in Winnipeg Saturday.

  • Winnipeg Jets' Blake Wheeler (26) hits Edmonton Oilers' Mark Arcobello (26) during the second period of Saturday's NHL game at MTS Centre.

    Trevor Hagan / Winnipeg Free Press

    Winnipeg Jets' Blake Wheeler (26) hits Edmonton Oilers' Mark Arcobello (26) during the second period of Saturday's NHL game at MTS Centre.

  • Winnipeg Jets' Blake Wheeler (26) and Jacob Trouba (8) celebrate after Trouba scored the game-winning goal in overtime to be the Edmonton Oilers  3-2 on Saturday.

    Trevor Hagan / Winnipeg Free Press

    Winnipeg Jets' Blake Wheeler (26) and Jacob Trouba (8) celebrate after Trouba scored the game-winning goal in overtime to be the Edmonton Oilers 3-2 on Saturday.

  • Edmonton Oilers' goaltender Ilya Bryzgalov (80) looks on as the Winnipeg Jets' Blake Wheeler (26), Mark Scheifele (55), Jacob Trouba (8) and Dustin Byfuglien (33) celebrate Trouba's game-winning goal in overtime to beat the Edmonton Oilers 3-2 in Winnipeg Saturday.

    Trevor Hagan / Winnipeg Free Press

    Edmonton Oilers' goaltender Ilya Bryzgalov (80) looks on as the Winnipeg Jets' Blake Wheeler (26), Mark Scheifele (55), Jacob Trouba (8) and Dustin Byfuglien (33) celebrate Trouba's game-winning goal in overtime to beat the Edmonton Oilers 3-2 in Winnipeg Saturday.

They are still too young to get into some bars on the road and still so fresh-faced they need to bust out the razor only a couple of times a month.

And maybe, just maybe, Mark Scheifele and Jacob Trouba are also a little too naive to really understand the significance of their contributions to the Winnipeg Jets in their rookie campaigns.

But damned if their teammates, the Jets’ brass and their faithful aren’t enjoying watching the two young guns grow up before their very eyes right now.

The two Jets’ 2.0 first-round draft picks — Scheifele in 2011, Trouba a year later — accounted for all three goals in the home side’s 3-2 overtime win over the Edmonton Oilers in downtown Winnipeg Saturday afternoon, the third straight under new boss Paul Maurice.

Scheifele scored his ninth of the season while Trouba potted his sixth and seventh, including the winner 70 seconds into overtime — all this with his dad visiting and in the crowd.

"It’s good to see him and it’s good to play well in front of him," beamed Trouba afterward. "I don’t do that very often. It was fun. I enjoyed it, it’s good to have family here, my teammates were pretty excited. I think we’ve got a good thing going here and we’re building in the right direction, that’s for sure."

Asked when he last scored an OT winner, Trouba added:

"I don’t know. I don’t know if I’ve ever had one, to be honest with you. I don’t think so."

His last two-goal game, then?

"I don’t remember that one, either. They don’t happen very often."

YOUNG GUNS, PART II

Scheifele’s goal was his first on home ice and he is now on a three-game point streak (2G, 2A) over the last three games. Only two NHL freshmen — Colorado’s Nathan MacKinnon and Tampa’s Tyler Johnson, both with 29 points — have more points than Scheifele’s 27 (9G, 18A).

Interestingly, in five of the six games in which Trouba has scored this year, Scheifele has also found the back of the net.

"We just push each other. Whenever he scores, I want to score. I don’t want to be shown up by him," said Scheifele with a grin. "And whenever I score, he wants to score. It’s good.

"It was pretty cool tonight. Jacob got two really, really big goals and had an unbelievable game. It’s just a matter of we want to win. That’s the main thing. We want to be part of a winning team and we want to be able to do whatever it takes to win."

THE COACH WEIGHS IN

Maurice has been asked for his take on just about every player on the Jets’ roster in his six days on the job. After Saturday’s win, and the work of the two youngsters, Maurice said:

"I think I’ve got 20 of ‘em. So, I don’t know... I’ve been here for a week. I showed up the first day and they looked like good players. And nothing’s changed my mind. They’re good players.

"They’re just on the team. It’s not like there’s a kiddie section in the locker room and we feed them. They're just one of the guys for me."

SPECIAL TEAMS, SPECIAL KIDS

The Jets were 0-for-5 on the power play but, thanks to some brilliant work by Bryan Little on Trouba's first goal — the Jets’ fourth short-handed marker of the season — the team was able to draw even with Edmonton early in the third period.

And what Maurice had to like was his team’s resiliency, both after falling behind 1-0 but also after giving up the equalizer with two minutes remaining.

Again, though, this day was about the Jets’ future on display in the present.

"I was telling Scheifs the other day on the bench... he’s flying out there and has got a lot of confidence going," said Blake Wheeler. "I’m just trying to keep building him up and let him know that he’s going to be The Man here soon enough. He’s not The Man yet, but one day real soon Scheifs and Troubs are going to be the guys with the reins on this team.

"There’s a couple of young kids that have a special ability. They do things out there that not everyone can do and to have them on your side is extremely exciting for the present but also for the future. You look at those guys... look at Troubs and the amount of confidence he plays with right now. You add a couple years of experience, a couple years of making that body look a little less like a boy and a little bit more like a man and you’ve got an unstoppable player.

"It’s a lot of fun to have those guys on your side."

ed.tait@freepress.mb.ca

Twitter: @WFPEdTait

History

Updated on Saturday, January 18, 2014 at 7:57 PM CST: Adds slideshow.

10:55 PM: Fixes typo in Scheifele quote.

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