Connor, Hellebuyck power Jets to shutout against Kraken

SEATTLE — Kyle Connor scored two goals and Connor Hellebuyck stopped 25 shots to lead the Winnipeg Jets to a 3-0 win over the Seattle Kraken on Thursday night.

It was Winnipeg’s first shutout of the season. Dominic Toninato also scored for the Jets, winners in four of their last six games. Paul Stastny, Mark Scheifele and Logan Stanley had assists as the Kraken again faltered early.

Stastny gathered in a turnover by Carson Soucy behind the net and found Toninato at the point for a one-timer past Seattle goaltender Philipp Grubauer at 5:24 of the first period.

Grubauer, who was pulled after giving up three goals on four shots in Seattle’s 6-1 loss to Pittsburgh on Monday, allowed the goal on Winnipeg’s third shot of the game. But, he finished the period with several tough saves, then traded athletic moves with Hellebuyck as neither team scored in the second period.

Grubauer stoned Nikolaj Ehlers on a breakaway midway through the second, then made another tough save after Ehlers gathered the puck and centered it to Logan Stanley. Grubauer shut down the chance with a glove save.

Hellebuyck countered with a sprawling save on a Jared McCann shot 30 seconds later. A few minutes later, Grubauer responded with a quick save on Josh Morrissey’s slap shot out of a faceoff.

But loose defense failed Grubauer early in the third period, when Connor took a pass from Scheifele and scored his 16th goal of the season after being allowed to skate freely in the crease. He added his third goal, unassisted at 14:54, after taking a turnover from Adam Larsson at mid-ice and outskating the defense before beating Grubauer.

Grubauer stopped stopped 28 of 31 shots. Winnipeg killed five penalties in the win.

NOTES: Stastny needs one assist to reach 500. … The Jets recalled D Ville Heinola from Manitoba of the AHL. … D Mark Giordano (COVID-19 protocols) returned to the ice after missing six games. Giordano tested positive for the coronavirus while the team was in Tampa Bay and quarantined in Florida. … Ehlers left the ice early in the third period with an apparent injury after taking a puck to the hand.


Jets: At Vancouver on Friday.

Kraken: Hosts Columbus on Saturday.

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