The Western Conference Finals continue this evening as the scene shifts to T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada and we will see the Winnipeg Jets grapple with the Vegas Golden Knights in game three of their best-of-seven series. The Golden Knights took game two by a score of 3-1 to even the series at 1-1. Probables: Getting the nod for the Jets will be Connor Hellebuyck (9-5, 2.29 GAA) and the Golden Knights will counter with Marc-Andre Fleury (9-3, 1.68 GAA).
Jets Continue To Struggle At Home
The Winnipeg Jets have been a very strong home team all year and they did win their first four postseason games here at home, but they have now lost three of their last four at Bell MTS Centre after falling in game two by a score of 3-1. The Jets have scored a total of six goals in those games and must now try and get back on track at the T-Mobile Arena where the Golden Knights have been very tough so far. The Jets have gone 4-2 on the road in the postseason so far, so they do have a shot of at least grabbing one of the two games here in Vegas and in turn take back their home-ice advantage. Scoring their lone goal in the game was Kyle Connorgpg and have allowed 2.77 gpg in those games.
Taking the loss in game two was Connor Hellebuyck, who allowed three goals on 28 shot attempts to fall to 9-5 with a 2.29 GAA and a .924 save percentage in this his first year of playoff action. During the regular season, he was 44-20 with a 2.36 GAA and a .924 save percentage overall, including 14-13 with a 2.42 GAA and a .927 save percentage on the road. Hellebuyck was 1-2 with a 4.40 GAA against the Golden Knights this year.
Winnipeg has been a solid offensive team in the playoffs as they come in ranked 3rd in scoring at 3.43 gpg, while also ranking 4th in shots taken (33.1 spg) and 4th in power play conversions, converting on 28.2% of their chances. They have been very solid at the defensive end of the ice, during the postseason, as they come in ranked 3rd in goals allowed, giving up 2.36 gpg, while also ranking 4th in shots allowed (30.6 spg) and 10th in penalty kill, allowing teams to convert on 25.7% of their chances.
Golden Knights Even The Series Up
The Golden Knights really played poorly in their opening game of this series but they got back to playing the way they did for most of the year and walked away with a 3-1 win. They used a tough defense and some timely offense to walk away with the win and have now tied up this series at 1-1. Vegas got back to the fore-checking that they had used in the first two series this year and the Jets just didn’t have an answer for it. Now the Golden Knights will look to keep it going here at home where they have been very tough this year. The Golden Knights have gone 4-1 at home in the postseason and have averaged 3.60 gpg in those games, while here at home for the year they have gone 33-13 and have averaged 3.57 gpg and have allowed 2.39 gpg in those games. Scoring in the game two win was Tomas Tatar, which was his first of the playoffs and Jonathan Marchessault, who scored twice and now has six in the playoffs.
Grabbing the win in game two was Marc-Andre Fleury, who stopped 30 of the 31 shots that he faced to improve to 9-3 with a 1.68 GAA and a .945 save percentage in the playoffs this year and 71-54 with a 2.55 GAA a .912 save percentage in the playoffs in his career. During the regular season, he was 29-17 with a 2.24 ERA and a .927 save percentage overall, including 16-10 with a 2.36 GAA and a .922 save percentage here at home. Fleury is 21-5 with a 2.33 GAA and a .917 save percentage in his carer (regular season) against the Jets.
Vegas has been below average on offense in the playoffs so far as they come in ranked 10th in scoring at 2.83 gpg, while also ranking 9th in shots taken (31.8 spg) and 10th in power play conversions, converting on 18.2% of their chances. They have been very strong at the defensive end of the ice, during the postseason, as they come in ranked 2nd in goals allowed, giving up 1.83 gpg, while also ranking 8th in shots allowed (31.8 spg) and 5th in penalty kill, allowing teams to convert on 19.2% of their chances.
- The Under is 3-1-1 in their last five games playing on one days rest
- The Under is 4-0-1 in their last five vs. the Pacific
- The Under is 10-4-2 in their last 16 after allowing two goals or less in their previous game
- The Under is 12-5-2 in their last 19 games following a win
The Winnipeg Jets have struggled at home of late, but they have played well on the road, and they have allowed a total of nine goals in their last five away from home. The Golden Knights have been a solid offensive team this year, but that offense hasn’t really shown up in the postseason and I will look for Connor Hellebuyck to keep it that way. The Jets have been a good offensive team all year, but the Golden Knights have allowed just 2.39 gpg at home all year and just 1.83 gpg in the postseason so far. Both offenses have been very good this year, but I see the play in the crease winning out as we get no more than four goals in this one.