Monday, August 3, 2015

Jets’ playoff push stalls

DALLAS—The Dallas Stars used a strong power play to stay in the Western Conference playoff chase last night.
Ray Whitney and Tyler Seguin scored with a man advantage as Dallas held off the Winnipeg Jets 2-1.

“Power plays for us won it, and the power play for them got them back into it,” Whitney noted.
The victory allowed Dallas to move within a point of the Phoenix Coyotes for the Western Conference’s final playoff spot.
The Stars have missed the playoffs the past five seasons.
Kari Lehtonen, whose 32 saves for Dallas included 14 in the third period, didn’t give up a goal until the Jets’ Bryan Little scored with 2:44 to go.
Winnipeg had a 4-on-3 power play—and added a fifth skater by pulling goalie Al Montoya.
“Special teams won the game, and the goalie made saves when he needed to,” said Stars’ coach Lindy Ruff.
“Kari was excellent,” he added. “His saves were great and his puck-handling really helped us.
“He made some good passes.”
The Jets, meanwhile, continued to fade in the post-season race.
“It is [tough to make a playoff push like this],” said Winnipeg coach Paul Maurice.
“The final results haven’t been good enough for our team.
“We’re just getting closer to it. We’re not there,” he stressed.
The Jets are 2-6-3 in their past 11 games. One of the victories was a 7-2 rout of visiting Dallas eight days earlier.
Ruff said he did not use that game as motivation.
“I didn’t even talk about last week,” he remarked.
Dallas’ defence has allowed only two goals in the past two games after giving up 16 in the previous three—all losses.
“I think we’ve cleaned up the individual mistakes,” said Ruff.
The Stars have 79 points. Phoenix, meanwhile, earned a point for a 4-3 overtime loss against the N.Y. Rangers to reach 80.
Whitney said the team did some scoreboard watching.
“We all look up to see the out-of-town scores,” he conceded.
“Everybody these last three weeks will be doing that.”
Elsewhere in the NHL, Montreal beat Boston 2-1 (SO), Ottawa topped Tampa Bay 4-3 (SO), Calgary nipped San Jose 2-1 (SO), and L.A. shaded Philadelphia 3-2.

More stories