April 26, 2018

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Record: 52 – 20 – 10

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Winnipeg Jets (52 – 20 – 10)

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Myers feeds highlight-reel goal past Dubnyk

Jets defenceman will have something to chirp about in off-season

Tyler Myers likely has some bragging rights this summer over Devan Dubnyk.

The pair, who are often part of the same off-season skating sessions, were part of a memorable play in Friday’s Game 2. Myers pulled the ol’ razzle-dazzle, faking out Jason Zucker and then driving to the Minnesota net, where he beat Dubnyk high from a tough angle. The opening goal sent the Jets on their way to another big victory.

“I’ve shot on him a lot this past summer, and he’s always a very good goalie. I was lucky to put one by him,” Myers said Saturday with a laugh.

Myers has been showing more offensive flair lately, and was happy to add a highlight-reel goal to his resumé.

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Tyler Myers likely has some bragging rights this summer over Devan Dubnyk.

The pair, who are often part of the same off-season skating sessions, were part of a memorable play in Friday’s Game 2. Myers pulled the ol’ razzle-dazzle, faking out Jason Zucker and then driving to the Minnesota net, where he beat Dubnyk high from a tough angle. The opening goal sent the Jets on their way to another big victory.

"I’ve shot on him a lot this past summer, and he’s always a very good goalie. I was lucky to put one by him," Myers said Saturday with a laugh.

Myers has been showing more offensive flair lately, and was happy to add a highlight-reel goal to his resumé.

"I know a lot of the guys were a little nervous when I first made the move, but luckily it worked out well," Myers said.

"You look at the last 10, 15 games, I’ve tried that a lot. Just finally was able to finish one. It’s good to get us on the board."

● ● ●

Dustin Byfuglien’s presence has certainly been felt this series. And the big defenceman’s impact was still the talk of the locker room Saturday.

Byfuglien blew up Joel Eriksson Ek with a monster hit in Game 1, then dished out an even more dizzying check to Minnesota captain Mikko Koivu.

"He’s so big. When he’s throwing hits like that, it changes the game for sure. You can see how aware players on the other team become when he’s on the ice," Myers said.

"Everybody gets pretty jacked up for a big hit, and the crowd gets going pretty crazy and Buff has the ability to do that, and we have a few other guys who have that ability to sort of change the tempo of the game with a big hit like that. That was definitely big," defenceman Josh Morrissey said.

● ● ●

It definitely didn’t hurt them in Game 2, but pretty much the only area the Jets came up short to the Wild was in the faceoff circle.

Winnipeg only won 20 of 53 draws Friday night, which was a surprising result for a team that usually enjoys great success in that department. (The Jets won 31 of 57 in Game 1).

Bryan Little and Paul Stastny both went 4-for-12, while Adam Lowry was 3-for-9. Andrew Copp was 1-for 5, while Mark Scheifele had the best night, going 6-for-13.

Minnesota’s Eric Staal was unbeatable Friday night, winning all nine of his draws. Matt Cullen (6-for-8) and Daniel Winnik (8-for-12) also were tough to beat.

Of course, the fact the Wild often started with the puck had no bearing on the final result. Winnipeg still outshot them by a whopping 44-17 margin in beating them 4-1.

● ● ●

Paul Maurice made an interesting tweak to his lines for Game 2, taking Copp off the effective checking line with Lowry and Brandon Tanev and putting Joel Armia in his place. Copp moved to a line with Little and Jack Roslovic.

"Top, top secret. That kind of stuff, man… sinks ships," Maurice said when quizzed about the moves.

Lowry said Saturday he’s comfortable with either winger at his side.

"I’ve played with Joel a lot in the past, and so has Rusty (Tanev). Copper seems to always be able to move up and down the lineups. He kinda gels with everyone. He was able to slide in there, and their line had a great game as well," Lowry said.

"I think playing with Joel, it’s a bit different style than what Andrew brings to our line. But he’s a big body, and likes to hold on to the puck. He’s got a lot of skill and he can make some plays. I think our job stays the same, we’re still trying to make it tough on the other team’s top lines to generate some offence. It just looks a little bit different."

mike.mcintyre@freepress.mb.caTwitter: @mikemcintyrewpg

Read more by Mike McIntyre.

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