Evander Kane's Performance Lifts Winnipeg Jets over Minnesota Wild in Shootout

Anthony CapocciContributor IFebruary 16, 2012

WINNIPEG, CANADA - FEBRUARY 7: Evander Kane #9 of the Winnipeg Jets skates during warmup before a game against the Toronto Maple Leafs in NHL action at the MTS Centre on February 7, 2012 in Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada. (Photo by Marianne Helm/Getty Images)
Marianne Helm/Getty Images

These two teams met in Winnipeg back in December. Tonight, it had the same playoff-like atmosphere as last time. It was another chapter in a reborn rivalry.

The Jets fans traveled and traveled well. They made themselves noticeable; they were loud and energetic with numerous "Go Jets Go" chants from start to finish.

Even a few "Back-strom" heckle-chants were heard from the crowd.

Nevertheless, it was a tight and physical game by both sides that saw plenty of scrums and a fairly even bout between Tanner Glass and Darroll Powe.

Evander Kane put the exclamation point on his stellar performance with the game-winning shootout goal.

Kane made himself visible throughout the night, scoring twice in regulation and assisting on a goal. His goals tonight put him over 20 for the first time in his young career.

The Wild opened up the scoring by taking advantage of an Alexander Burmistrov turnover and a Dustin Byfuglien pinch, which led to a three-on-one rush where Devin Setoguchi scored a simple tap in. The Jets were able to notch the game before intermission with a beautiful pass from Blake Wheeler to Evander Kane.

Kane and Setoguchi also had their teams' lone goals in the second period, giving each of them two for the game.

Mikko Koivu scored early in the third to give the Wild a 3-2 lead, but Burmistrov made up for his first period gaffe by tying the game shortly after.

After a scoreless five-minute overtime period, the Jets took the victory in a shootout.

Chris Mason got the start in net and was solid overall. He wasn't pressured as often, but, when called upon, he was able to make key saves. 

The Jets outshot the Wild 27-25.

The Wild capitalized on their second period power play and went 1-2 for the game while the Jets struggles in that department continued, as they went 0-3.

The Wild also had the advantage in the faceoff department—something that the Jets will need to work on and become more proficient at.

Eric Fehr continues to be a healthy scratch for the Jets.

Zach Bogosian missed tonight's action with a lower-body injury. Randy Jones played in lieu of Bogosian.

The Jets are back in action tomorrow night as they play host to the Boston Bruins. It is the first of an eight-game homestand.