Red Wings-Jets Preview

The Associated Press

The last time the Detroit Red Wings visited Winnipeg, they completed a sweep of a four-game trip.

Over 17 years later, they're looking to do it again.

The Red Wings look to finish off a perfect trip Monday night and send the Jets to a fourth straight loss.

Detroit (9-4-2) is making its first trip to Winnipeg since March 10, 1996, when they defeated the Jets 5-2. That franchise eventually moved to Phoenix to become the Coyotes, and the Red Wings are 10-4-0 against the latest iteration of the Jets, who relocated from Atlanta two years ago.

Detroit defeated them 7-1 at home Dec. 10, 2011, but didn't make the scheduled return to Winnipeg last season due to the truncated schedule created by the lockout.

Winning this visit would make the Red Wings perfect on this swing through Canada after defeating Edmonton 5-0 on Saturday. Coach Mike Babcock was pleased with the performance after his team squandered an early two-goal lead before emerging with a 4-3 victory at Calgary a day earlier.

"We controlled the game and played well. We wanted to play three periods, not two like we did (Friday)," Babcock told the NHL's official website.

Darren Helm scored the opening goal Saturday in his season debut and just his second game since March 2012 due to a series of injuries.

"Helmer gives a huge dimension of talent that we can take advantage of if he is healthy," Babcock said. "He can be dominant. To see him do what he did (Saturday), I thought he played very well."

Petr Mrazek needed to make only 14 saves to earn his first NHL shutout in his third career game and first appearance of the season.

Jimmy Howard figures to be back in net for Detroit after stopping 22 shots against the Flames. He is 2-0-1 with a 2.27 GAA over his last three games since being pulled in the first period of a 6-1 loss to Ottawa on Oct. 23 after allowing three goals on the first eight shots.

He would be facing a Winnipeg team that ranks near the bottom of the league with 2.20 goals per game. The Jets have particularly struggled during a 1-4-2 stretch, totaling 14 goals while their only victory came 2-1 in a shootout at Dallas on Oct. 26.

Winnipeg allowed five unanswered goals in a 5-1 loss to visiting Chicago on Saturday.

Ondrej Pavelec is growing frustrated after yielding four goals on 14 shots, getting pulled after giving up the third goal of the second period at 5:49.

"I'm frustrated," Pavelec told the team's official website. "They showed us how to play. It's a really good team. We played a really good first period, and then we slowed down and couldn't catch them. The last two periods were just embarrassing.

"Everybody expects the goalie to make the saves, and I wasn't able to make those saves."

Pavelec is 2-1-0 with a 2.98 GAA in three starts against Detroit. He surrendered seven goals on Dec. 10, 2011, and one combined in the other two meetings.

Bryan Little leads the Jets with seven goals and 11 points, but was held pointless Saturday. The center has three goals and two assists in five career games against Detroit.

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