Winnipeg Free Press - PRINT EDITION

Stuart solid in first game back after time out to heal hip

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IT was just about the kind of stat line the Winnipeg Jets have come to expect from Mark Stuart.

No goals, no assists, but 17 minutes and 49 seconds of solid work spread out over 23 minutes that included a couple of hits and a blocked shot.

Not a bad afternoon of work for a guy coming off a 10-game stint on the injured list with a bad hip.

"It felt good. My conditioning felt good and I'm happy with that," he said afterward. "It's just building off it now.

"It's about keeping your emotions in check a little bit. You're so excited you put yourself out of position a little bit."

The Jets defence corps is still without Jacob Trouba, who may be back on the upcoming road trip, Paul Postma and Zach Bogosian.

THIRD LINE'S A CHARM: The Jets got great work from their third line of Mark Scheifele (1A), Matt Halischuk (1G, 1A) and Michael Frolik (1G, 1A) as they went to the hard areas to score.

"We did a good job of getting pucks to the net and trying to create some offence and came back hard to try and turn some pucks around," Halischuk said.

NUMBERS GAME: The Jets won 28 of 54 faceoffs for a 52 per cent edge, led by James Wright, who was 8-3 in the circle. It marked the third time in the last four games they won the majority of draws.

Winnipeg won the faceoff battle only four times in its first 20 games.

-- Dustin Byfuglien had a four-game goal streak snapped in the loss. He entered the contest with six goals in his last six games.

-- Ondrej Pavelec has now faced 31 shootout attemps this season, most in the NHL.

QUOTABLE: "I guess we figured out how to play against them. I thought we did a lot of good things... but it's tough to look at it right now and be positive about it when we just lost." -- Andrew Ladd on the Jets picking up their first point in three games against the Wild this season.

OUCH: The Wild (3-0) and Chicago Blackhawks (3-0) have combined to take 12 of 12 points from the Jets this year. The Jets have just one point against their Central Division rivals, picked up in Saturday's shootout loss.

Overall, Winnipeg is now 3-9-2 vs. the Central, 6-10-3 against Western Conference opponents. Worth noting as they head east for their six-game road trip: The Jets are 4-1-1 vs. the Eastern Conference this season.

ed.tait@freepress.mb.ca Twitter: @WFPEdTait

Republished from the Winnipeg Free Press print edition November 24, 2013 B3

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