NHL Playoffs: Winnipeg Jets ‘hopeful’ Scheifele plays crucial Game 5

Winnipeg –

Marc Scheifele gave him some hope when he arrived at Winnipeg airport with the Jets for Tuesday’s flight to Las Vegas.

But the team’s top goalscorer in Monday’s 4-2 playoff loss to the Golden Knights with an upper-body injury remains a question mark as Vegas lead 3-1 in the best-of-seven in Thursday’s crucial game five. is left. , 1st round series.

Jets head coach Rick Bowness told reporters at the airport, “I spoke with Mark and he feels better than he did (Monday) night, so he’s definitely on the day-to-day (list).” said.

“Let’s put him in the promising category for Thursday.”

The odds are in favor of the Golden Knights to eliminate the injured Jets in the Nevada gambling mecca. His 3-1 team in the Best of Seven NHL Series holds the series record of 299-31.

Bowness hasn’t bowed to past results.

“We have no choice. We have to be confident. We have to. And it will be,” he said. “We will be a very confident group going into the game.

“When you go into the game and they say with confidence that it’s going to be a tough fight, I like our chances when we play with that kind of attitude.”

With a career-high 42 goals in the regular season and one in the playoffs, Scheifele showed no visible signs of injury at the airport. He was pulling his two rolling suitcases with both hands and draped the backpack strap over his right shoulder.

The veteran center came off about two-and-a-half minutes into the first period of Monday’s game, firing a cross just where Vegas goalkeeper Laurent Brosois had stopped it before tripping and crashing into the left end board. .

He got up and continued skating and was on the ice for the Winnipeg power play. After attempting to fire, he immediately appeared to grab his right arm. He slid onto the bench, went down the tunnel at 5:11 and did not return.

Scheifele was the latest of several major Jets to be injured as the eighth-seeded club tries to overthrow the conference’s top team.

Jets All-Star defenseman Josh Morrissey suffered a lower body injury in Game 3 and was ruled out for the rest of the series. The vice-captain traveled with the team to add to his expertise and support.

Speedy forward Nikolai Ehlers, who is awaiting medical attention after an upper body injury late in the season that has kept him out of four playoff games, means he’ll be skating with the team, asking, ‘Where is he? We’ll see,” said Bowness.

Backup goaltender David Ricci, who missed Monday’s game (lower body), also headed to Nevada. He was replaced by AHL callup Arvid Holm in Monday’s game.

Rookie forward Cole Parfetti has been out for months and was not expected to play in the first round, but he also joined the team. are doing.

Before boarding the plane, Jets starting goaltender Conor Hellebuick told reporters it was hard to see so many “guys of heart and soul” injured.

“So far we haven’t had much luck,” said the former Vezina Trophy winner. “Despite the adversity, we have played quite well.

“Now we have to make sure our heads are right, we’re in for the grind and we’re not done yet.

The Hellebike saw the Jets winning their first game in Vegas, 5–1, as a good sign.

“At this point, we’re just running one game at a time,” he said. “I don’t want three, I want one and go from there.”

“I like our team. I like how we play. Bouncing here, bouncing there, things can work out.”

He was also confident in how he creases.

“I don’t think the result will be like this, given how and how I feel about my game,” Hellebuyk said. “That said, we’re inches away from actually flipping the script on this one.”

play the odds

Brett Howden, who scored Vegas’ first and last goals into an empty net in Monday’s victory, liked the odds of his team winning the series in the desert, but didn’t see it as a sure bet. It was not.

“We know where we are, but we don’t want to rely on the odds rather than just relying on it.

“We know what we have to do. We have to work. I’m going to dial in. And I’m ready to go.”

This report by The Canadian Press was first published on April 25, 2023.

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