NHL Preview from The Sports Network
Tuesday, December 20th (All times Eastern)
New York Islanders (10-14-6) at Winnipeg Jets (15-13-4), 8:30 p.m.
(Sports Network) - Playing in front of the friendly faithful has been a delight for the Winnipeg Jets. Tonight, they will resume a six-game homestand versus the New York Islanders at MTS Centre.
Winnipeg is 2-1-0 so far on the residency and recorded a 5-3 triumph over the Anaheim Ducks the last time out on Saturday. Zach Bogosian had a goal and two assists, Kyle Wellwood had a goal and an assist and Blake Wheeler, Alexander Burmistrov and Andrew Ladd each scored for the Jets, who got 33 saves from Chris Mason. Mason had trouble hearing since the crowd was overjoyed by the return of former Jet and current Duck Teemu Selanne.
"To be honest with you it was hard as heck to be out there," Mason said. "At the beginning of the game you're trying to communicate with your D men but it was kind of pointless because I could barely even hear myself. It was pretty cool though to see what he (Teemu Selanne) means to the city and how high he holds Winnipeg in his heart."
Selanne, who began his NHL career in 1992 with Winnipeg, and posted two assists on Saturday.
The Jets will also host Montreal and Pittsburgh on the homestand and own an 11-5-0 ledger on familiar territory. Center Bryan Little (back) is questionable for Tuesday's game and defenseman Tobias Enstrom returned to the lineup versus Anaheim after missing 20 games.
Wheeler owns 15 points in his last 14 games and goaltender Ondrej Pavelec is four wins away from 150 in his career. The Jets have won six of their last eight games overall and eight of 10 at home.
The Islanders will resume a three-game road trip Tuesday and ended a four-game losing streak (0-3-1) with Saturday's 2-1 shootout victory at Minnesota.
Frans Nielsen scored in the second round of the shootout, while Andrew MacDonald scored in regulation for the Islanders, who improved to 4-6-3 as the guest and are still last in the Atlantic Division.
"It was a pretty important win for us tonight," MacDonald said. "I think we pushed back after they tied it."
Al Montoya made 20 saves in a winning effort. The Isles will wrap up the trek against the Rangers on Thursday. Defenseman Steve Staios (concussion) is questionable for Tuesday and goaltender Evgeni Nabokov (groin) will be available for action this evening. Nabokov is six wins shy of his 300th.
New York is 4-1-1 in the last six road games and has scored first in each of the past six road contests. The Isles are 8-3-3 when scoring first and 2-11-2 when allowing the game's first goal.
The Jets won the first meeting with the Islanders, 3-0, on Nov. 3 at Nassau Coliseum. Pavelec stopped all 34 shots he faced for his first shutout of the year and the seventh of his career.
12/20 10:43:22 ET