If scoring goals is not your forte, then the Vancouver Canucks are the perfect opponent right now.
The Winnipeg Jets came into Tuesday night’s game having scored just three goals in their last three games, all losses.
But the Canucks offence hit a record level of futility, setting a franchise record goalless drought in a 2-0 loss to the Jets.
Daniel Sedin scored at the 12:00 mark of the first period against Colorado March 16, and the Canucks haven’t scored since, an incredible 228:00 without a goal.
Winnipeg threw everything but the kitchen sink at Canucks goalie Jacob Markstrom, who kept Vancouver in it with 47 saves, but he was provided no run support by a team that couldn’t get any of their 28 shots past Ondrej Pavelec.
“Happy for a shutout, happy for a win. We played a very good game, threw a lot of pucks at the net,” says Pavelec, who recorded his first shutout of the season. “Good for young guys to feel how it is to win the game.”
While the Jets are currently fielding a team featuring a number of players that wore Moose jerseys for most of the year, the Canucks situation is even more dire, which is why Jets head coach Paul Maurice is taking the win with a grain of salt.
“They’ve just come off back-to-back shutouts, they’ve got half a hockey team out, the meat of their team is out of their lineup,” Maurice says. “We’ll put quite a bit more stock in how we play Thursday [against LA]. We had to do certain things to be a good hockey team tonight and we did those. To say that if we just play our game it should look like that every night, that’s not realistic.”
After two scoreless periods, Adam Lowry finally broke the deadlock with a wraparound effort 2:30 into the third. The Canucks challenged it on the grounds of goaltender interference, but the call was upheld. Mark Scheifele scored into an empty net late to seal the win.
The Canucks best chance came on an Alexandre Grenier breakaway in the first, but his stick snapped in half as he shot the puck, a moment perfectly epitomizing Vancouver’s inability to score.
This game marked the first time this season that the Jets won when getting 40 or more shots on goal. They will try to make it two straight wins Thursday night when they host the Pacific-leading Kings. Puck drop is 7 p.m.