RECAP: Mason Appleton, Winnipeg Jets roar back to beat Calgary Flames

By Field Level Media
Feb 2, 2021; Winnipeg, Manitoba, CAN.; Winnipeg Jets Left Wing Kristian Vesalainen (93) drives for the puck between Calgary Flames center Derek Ryan (10) and Calgary Flames center Joakim Nordstrom (20) in the first period at Bell MTS Place. Mandatory Credit: James Carey Lauder-USA TODAY Sports

Mason Appleton scored twice and Mathieu Perreault collected three assists to pace the hometown Winnipeg Jets to a 4-1 victory over the Calgary Flames on Thursday night.

Goaltender Connor Hellebuyck made 23 saves for the Jets, who scored four unanswered goals to win their straight game — both over the Flames. The victory is the 153rd of Hellebuyck’s career, which is the most in franchise history.

Winnipeg isn’t schedule to play again until Tuesday in Calgary.

Related: If you’re a fan of the Jets, check out #GoJetsGo rumors, rankings, and news here.

Trailing 1-0 after the first period, the Jets dominated the second period to take a 3-1 lead. First, Appleton put the hosts on the board when he pounced on a loose puck at the 3:31 mark.

Then, Kyle Connor netted his team-high seventh goal of the season to put the Jets ahead. Following a turnover by Calgary’s Mikael Backlund, who was skating in his 700th career game, Connor sped away and snapped home a shot from the slot at 13:59 of the middle frame.

Mark Scheifele capped a dominating period for the Jets with his fifth goal of the season. Neal Pionk’s point shot hit Scheifele in the slot, but he found the loose puck and slipped it into the net with 50.7 seconds remaining in the frame.

After both Rasmus Andersson and Nikita Nesterov rang shots off the post in the third period while the Flames pushed to draw back even, Appleton rounded out the scoring with an empty-net goal, his third tally of the season.

The Flames had surrendered the first goal in six of the last seven games, but they took the lead when Andrew Mangiapane opened the scoring with 55.7 seconds remaining in the first period. Mangiapane was parked in the low slot and redirected the pass from Juuso Valimaki.

Related: If you’re a fan of the Flames, check out #NHLFlames rumors, rankings, and news here.

The loss was costly for the Flames, as veteran forward Derek Ryan left in the first period after being hit in the hand while blocking a shot. A likely replacement will be Sam Bennett, the 2014 first-round draft choice who was scratched. Bennett’s agent reportedly asked for a trade.

Jacob Markstrom stopped 23 shots for the Flames, who return home to face the Edmonton Oilers on Saturday before the Jets come calling.

–Field Level Media