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NHL Preview from The Sports Network
Thursday, February 21st (All times Eastern)
Winnipeg Jets (6-8-1) at Carolina Hurricanes (8-5-1), 7 p.m.
(Sports Network) - The Winnipeg Jets continue a five-game road trip on Thursday night looking for a second straight victory as they visit the Southeast Division-rival Carolina Hurricanes.
The Jets began their swing by snapping a three-game slide courtesy of a 2-1 win at Buffalo on Tuesday. Andrew Ladd netted the game-winner early in the third period and Ondrej Pavelec made the two-goal effort by the team stand up in making 29 saves.
"Pavelec was outstanding in this game, he really helped us win," Jets coach Claude Noel said. "He made some key saves, he was big in the net, he was really focused and I thought he was outstanding, which is the way we know he's capable of playing."
Bryan Little added the other score 60 seconds into the game for the Jets, while Ladd potted his team-leading eighth goal of the campaign. He also has 13 points, tied with defenseman Tobias Enstrom for the league lead.
Enstrom, though, missed his second game in a row due to a right shoulder injury and is out indefinitely.
The Hurricanes have their own injury concerns as they skated on Monday without forwards Jeff Skinner (concussion) and Tim Brent (lower body) as well as defensemen Tim Gleason (lower body) and Joni Pitkanen (lower body). Minus those skaters, Carolina was shut out 3-0 by the Montreal Canadiens on Monday and had a three-game winning streak halted.
Cam Ward stopped 23 shots for Carolina.
"We just didn't have enough jump or enough energy" said Hurricanes captain Eric Staal, who had an 11-game point streak snapped that was the longest in the NHL this season. He had notched eight goals and 17 points over his streak, which was the second-longest of his career.
While Skinner, Gleason and Brent may all sit out this game versus the Jets, Pitkanen could return from his lower-body injury after practicing on Wednesday.
This is the first of four meetings between the Hurricanes and Jets this season. Winnipeg won four of the six encounters in 2011-12 and have taken three of their last four as the visitor in this series.
Staal has notched 23 goals and 55 points in 54 career games versus the Jets franchise, while Ward is 21-10-4 with a 2.96 goals against average and one shutout in 36 career meetings.
Pavelec has gone 3-6-2 with a 4.04 GAA in 12 meetings with the 'Canes.
02/21 10:33:00 ET