6 Things We Learned in the NHL: Winnipeg Woes

Ryan Johansen and Colin Wilson each scored twice as the Nashville Predators hammered the Winnipeg Jets.

While Americans were in an induced turkey coma after Thanksgiving, Canadians feasted on some early (and often) NHL action.

The Jets are struggling, Connor McDavid almost had some magic, Brent Burns is making his new deal look good and a couple of slumping Predators are showing positive signs.

Here’s six things we learned Friday in the NHL:

Woes in the ‘Peg
Things are going from bad to worse in Winnipeg.

The Jets dropped their fifth straight after a 5-1 loss to the Nashville Predators. Winnipeg’s road record is now a dismal 3-8-2.

The Jets have scored just once in each of their last four matchups and rookie Patrik Laine, the second overall pick in the 2016 NHL Draft, hasn’t scored in each of the five losses.

Another aspect of the Jets’ struggles is their inability to hold leads. As my colleague Rory Boylen has examined before, Winnipeg started the season by holding the lead after two periods just twice in 11 games.

The Jets have won five times in November and haven’t scored first in 10-of-14 games. During the five-game skid, Winnipeg has trailed by margins of 2-0, 3-0, 2-0, 2-0 and 1-0 before eventually finding the scoreboard.

Not the starts you need if you’re going to win games in the NHL.

On the Filip side…

The Predators are heating up and find themselves on a roll of three-straight wins.

If they’re going to keep up the winning ways, they’ll need contributions from both Ryan Johansen and Filip Forsberg. Nashville got two goals and an assist from Johansen on Friday while Forsberg has points in three in a row.

But both players are struggling to put the puck in the back of the net.

Johansen has just four goals so far this season and Forsberg isn’t doing much better with two goals in 20 games. The solution for Johansen? Shoot!


Captain Connor McDavid did a little bit of everything in Edmonton’s shootout loss against the Arizona Coyotes.

From opening the scoring 1:31 into the first period with a beauty…

To finding his way into enemy territory…

To almost winning the game with no time left on the clock in overtime…

Also, can we talk about those Coyotes throwbacks for a second? Arizona improved to 1-0-1 while wearing the ’90s style jerseys.

Arizona Coyotes goalie Mike Smith, left, celebrates a win against the Oilers. (Ross D. Franklin/AP)

Boston, you traded him!
Dougie Hamilton returned to TD Garden for the second time since being traded in June 2015 and, needless to say, it was not a warm welcome.

Hamilton was booed every time he touched the puck in Calgary’s 2-1 win over the Bruins. For those Boston fans that don’t remember, Hamilton never asked for a trade but was rather dealt for draft picks.

The Toronto native spent the first three seasons of his NHL career with the Bruins and has two goals and eight assists in 23 games this season.

Prospect watch
Mikhail Sergachev…dangling for days.

The Montreal Candiens prospect, who was sent back to the Ontario Hockey League at the end of October, had a highlight reel play with the Windsor Spitfires in their game against the Ottawa 67’s.

The Russian has six assists in nine games since rejoining the Spitfires, where he earned defenceman of the year honours in his rookie campaign in 2015-16.

Sergachev, 18, played just three games with Montreal this year but will definitely be in the Habs’ future plans on the back end with that skill set.

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Living the dream
Sharks defenceman Brent Burns is doing pretty well for himself lately.

After signing an eight-year deal on Tuesday, Burns scored an easy one for the Sharks against the New York Islanders on Friday.

Wondering how that deal stacks up against some other top defencemen in the league? Fear not! We’ve got you covered.

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