|Laine leads Jets against visiting Kings|
WINNIPEG, Manitoba -- Here's something the Winnipeg Jets have never been able to say this late in a season -- they have the leading goal scorer in the NHL on their roster.
Well, okay, tied for being the top sniper.
Finnish phenom Patrik Laine scored his 42nd and 43rd goals of the campaign on Monday night in a 4-2 victory over the Dallas Stars, pulling him even with his boyhood hero, Alex Ovechkin of the Washington Capitals, who notched his 43rd earlier in the evening against the Philadelphia Flyers.
Laine, 19, has the longest point streak by a teenager in NHL history at 15 games (18 goals and 26 points) and has been particularly lethal against the Stars, with 14 goals, including two hat-tricks, in nine career games.
"It's too bad that we're not playing against Dallas any more this season," Laine told The Winnipeg Sun. "I think I'm just pretty lucky against Dallas. I don't know why."
The win solidified the Jets' position in second place in the Central Division with 96 points.
But it wasn't all good news for the Jets on Monday. Defenseman Jacob Trouba, who had missed eight weeks with a high ankle sprain before returning to the lineup last week, didn't finish the game after colliding heavily with Stars captain Jamie Benn and possibly suffering a concussion. Trouba's legs buckled after he tried to get up and he had to be helped to the bench by defensemen Tyler Myers, Ben Chiarot and winger Joel Armia.
Coach Paul Maurice told The Winnipeg Free Press that Trouba came to Bell MTS Place Tuesday morning feeling "pretty darn good" but that and a couple of bucks will get you a cup of coffee at Tim Hortons.
"That tells you nothing in these situations. We need to get a few days on him. Better to feel good than not, but it will take a few days before we fully understand the extent of it," Maurice said.
"He'll see the specialist (Monday) and they'll give us a good idea of where we're at. It's usually two or three days before you find out which direction it goes. Whether it's going to be longer term. Not always, but it's happened in the past."
The Kings come to town on the heels of a 4-3 overtime victory against the Minnesota Wild on Tuesday. Sniper Jeff Carter scored his second goal of the game with less than 34 seconds left in the extra period, ending a contest where the Kings had been up by two goals only to fall behind and then score in the dying seconds after pulling their goaltender.
"It was a roller-coaster game but for the most part we played really well," Carter said in a postgame interview. "We gave two (goals) back but we stuck with it. At this point in the year, two points is two points."
The win moved the Kings up into a tie with the Anaheim Ducks for third place in the Pacific Division with 86 points but because they have more regulation wins, the Ducks are bumped down into one of the wild-card spots in the Western Conference.
The Kings have been treading water all month -- winning one, losing one, winning one, losing one -- while in the midst of a dogfight with the Ducks, Calgary Flames, Dallas Stars and Colorado Avalanche.