Hellebuyck gets fourth shutout of season as Jets beat Capitals 3-0


WINNIPEG, Manitoba — Connor Hellebuyck stopped 23 shots for his fourth shutout of the season as the Winnipeg Jets beat the Washington Capitals 3-0 on Monday night.

Hellebuyck improved to 30-14-3, becoming the fourth goalie this season to reach the 30-win mark. He accomplished the feat for the fifth time in his career. It was Hellebuyck’s 36th career shutout.

Neal Pionk, Alex Iafallo and Kyle Connor scored for the Jets, who were coming off a 5-0 shutout loss to Vancouver on Saturday that Winnipeg coach Rick Bowness described as the worst game “by far” the team had played in his two-year tenure.

“Extremely confident,” the Jets’ Adam Lowry said of bouncing back. “We talked about the game (against the Canucks), we watched some clips and saw areas that we could clean up.

“We got off to a better start. We really fell behind the 8-ball against Vancouver.”

The Jets have won eight of their last 11.

“Give the guys credit. They weren’t very happy with our game in Vancouver,” Bowness said. “They knew they had to bounce back, and they did. It was a solid team effort tonight. That’s what it takes.”

Charlie Lindgren had 26 saves for Washington, which began a five-game road trip with its third loss in six games.

“Just right from the start, it just felt like, (to) me, when I was standing there watching, it was just bigger, faster, stronger,” Capitals coach Spencer Carbery said of the Jets. “Every facet, they just were. So you’ve got to tip your cap, that’s a really good team that just got better with (Tyler) Toffoli and (Sean) Monahan and those guys.”

New Jets players Toffoli and Colin Miller were cheered loudly when they were welcomed by the rink announcer and shown on the Jumbotron. The two were acquired from New Jersey last Friday in separate deals for draft picks.

Toffoli was slotted on Winnipeg’s second line on the right side of center Sean Monahan and left wing Iafallo. Miller was paired with defenseman Dylan Samberg.

Winnipeg led 1-0 after the first period and 2-0 following the second. The Jets were outshooting the visitors 7-1 after the first five minutes and it was 12-5 when the opening period ended.

Pionk scored his fifth goal of the season at 10:05 after taking a cross-ice pass from Mason Appleton as he rushed the net.

“They came out of the gates hot,” Washington forward Dylan Strome said of the Jets. “Obviously with, I think, a frustrating game for them in Vancouver, so we expected a response. They came out flying, they were all over us. I don’t think we managed that pressure too well.”

After Winnipeg’s Nikolaj Ehlers and Cole Perfetti hit the posts early in the second, Iafallo made it 2-0 at 8:16. Defenseman Josh Morrissey was skating across the ice inside the blue line, but suddenly turned and fired the puck at the net and it glanced off Iafallo past Lindgren.

Connor scored his team-leading 27th goal of the season after redirecting a pass from Mark Scheifele at the 10-minute mark of the third period.

The Jets played without forward Gabe Vilardi (upper body injury) for a sixth straight game.

T.J. Oshie returned for the Capitals after being taken off the injured-reserve list following a seven-game absence (upper-body injury).

UP NEXT

Capitals: At Edmonton on Wednesday night in the second of a five-game trip.

Jets: Host Nashville on Wednesday night in the middle game of a three-game homestand.

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AP NHL: https://www.apnews.com/hub/NHL



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