WINNIPEG -- Andrew Ladd
scored his 11th and 12th goals of the season to spark the Winnipeg Jets
to a 3-1 victory over the New Jersey Devils
in NHL action Thursday night.
Ladd's first goal matched the franchise record for the fastest goal at the start of a game when he converted on a breakaway just eight seconds after the opening faceoff.
And he scored the game-winner with just over eight minutes left in the third period to break a 1-1 tie. Blueliner Dustin Byfuglien rushed the puck end to end, circled the Devils' net and flipped it in front, and Ladd chipped the puck about six inches as goalie Johan Hedberg
was well out of position.
New Jersey forward Andrei Loktionov fired just his second goal of the season three minutes into the second period to even the game 1-1.
Blake Wheeler scored into an empty net to seal the win for Winnipeg. Ladd picked up an assist.
In the first period, the Jets' captain took a pass from Zach Bogosian near the blueline, walked in untouched and deked goalie Johan Hedberg.
The Jets improved to 10-9-1, while the Devils fell to 10-6-4.
It was the first of two home games for the Jets, who went 4-1 on a recent road trip. They host the Washington Capitals
on Saturday afternoon before hitting the road for four games next week.
The Devils play the Sabres in Buffalo on Saturday.
Ladd scored the only goal of the first period as the Jets outshot the Devils 8-5.
The clubs were tied with 13 shots apiece through 40 minutes.
Nearly 10 minutes went by in the final frame before the Jets got a shot on goal, a long blast from James Wright
that Hedberg handled easily, prompting a loud ovation from the frustrating Winnipeg fans.
Pavelec made 22 saves for the victory.
Ladd's first goal tied a mark set by Ronald Petrovicky on Dec. 20, 2003 when the franchise was still based in Atlanta. The Thrashers moved to Winnipeg prior to the 2011-12 NHL season.
Kyle Wellwood also scored just eight seconds into a game against the Pittsburgh Penguins
early last year for the Jets.
NOTES: The Jets have scored first in their last seven games. ... Andrew Ladd has the most goals by an NHL captain this season with 12. ... The Devils placed all-star goalie Martin Brodeur on injury reserve Tuesday. The 40-year-old netminder has a sore back. ... Travis Zajac finally played in front of family and friends in Winnipeg on Thursday. The New Jersey forward missed both games last season while recovering from surgery on his Achilles tendon. ... Jets' goalie Ondrej Pavelec played the 205th game of his career Thursday, more than any other netminder in franchise history. He moved ahead of Kari Lehtonen, who played 204 games when the club was based out of Atlanta. ... Evander Kane had points in eight straight games coming into Thursday's game (6 goals, 4 assists), the longest active point streak in the NHL. ... Devils defenseman Bryce Salvador, born two hours from Winnipeg in Brandon, Manitoba, was named captain prior to the season, the 10th captain in team history. ... Winnipeg-born blueliner Derek Meech was recalled by the Jets from St. John's of the AHL on Wednesday. He won a Stanley Cup with the Detroit Red Wings
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- Ice Hockey
- Winnipeg Jets
- Andrew Ladd
- New Jersey Devils
- Johan Hedberg