Line effective without scoring

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NASHVILLE, Tenn. -- On the surface, the line could be called a disaster.

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Hey there, time traveller!
This article was published 15/11/2014 (3006 days ago), so information in it may no longer be current.

NASHVILLE, Tenn. — On the surface, the line could be called a disaster.

Rookie centre Adam Lowry has no points in 11 games. Mathieu Perreault, converted to the left side, has no points in 10 and no goals at all this season, though he has one shootout winner. And Dustin Byfuglien, who also gets time four-on-four and on the power play, has one assist in four games.

But as the Jets’ third line, the trio is anything but ineffective.

“Zone time,” pointed out Jets coach Paul Maurice. “A lot of good chances and to their credit, they haven’t tried to do something different. It’s frustrating. Dustin, more than anybody, has probably had the puck on his stick more than any forward in our locker-room and expects to score himself. But I think the fact they’ve had so many opportunities keeps them going back to that well.

“Mathieu Perreault, over the last six or seven games, has really started to get more creative. He had a great rush chance the other night, made a really good shot and it was a really good save. We like the way the line’s playing, but we’d like to be able to have something for them to hang their hat on with goals.”

Byfuglien revealed a combination of frustration and sarcasm on Friday when asked about the line.

“It’s going,” he said. “We haven’t done anything really. We’re killing a bunch of minutes, that’s for sure. That’s all we can do.”

Asked if some production is only a matter of time, Byfuglien replied: “God, I hope so, soon. It’s never easy to sit there and not get them. We’re getting plenty of looks and I feel we’re in their end most of the time. It’s a matter of time before it comes.”

Perreault admitted he’s mildly concerned about the production part of this equation.

“A little worried, but it’s still November,” he said. “As long as the chances are there, eventually I feel like down the stretch, January and February when it really counts, eventually our line is going to make it go in if we play like that.

“We’re creating chances. It’s a long season. We’re playing too good right now not to turn this around for our line.”

— — —

True North Sports and Entertainment will celebrate the 10th anniversary of the opening of the MTS Centre Tuesday night with the Winnipeg Jets’ home game against the New Jersey Devils.

The MTS Centre opened Nov. 16, 2004, with the Northern Lights concert and its hockey debut was the following evening, when the Manitoba Moose defeated the St. John’s Maple Leafs.

Tuesday, fans attending the NHL game will receive a limited edition lithograph honouring the 10th anniversary of the arena. Fans will also be able to see a new tribute wall in the Hargrave walkway, commemorating the highlights of the building’s first 10 years.

“True North’s full-time staff of 190 and part time-team of 800 are excited beyond words to celebrate the 10 years since MTS Centre opened its doors,” Mark Chipman, executive chairman and governor of True North Sports & Entertainment and the Jets said in a statement. “The goal when opening MTS Centre was to enhance Winnipeg’s downtown by hosting premier sports and entertainment in a world-class facility. On a night where the Winnipeg Jets will play their 121st National Hockey League game at MTS Centre, we are proud to recognize the building’s rich history.”

True North game productions will feature a video review of the most memorable hockey moments in the MTS Centre’s history.

The building’s naming sponsor, MTS, will also be giving away thundersticks to all fans attending the game.

tim.campbell@freepress.mb.ca

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