Kyle Connor scores twice to lead Jets past Blues 5-2

ST. LOUIS — Kyle Connor scored twice, and Mark Scheifele added a goal and an assist to help the Winnipeg Jets beat the St. Louis Blues 5-2 on Tuesday night.

Alex Iafallo had four assists for his first career four-point game. Neil Pionk and Cole Perfetti also scored, and Connor Hellebuyck made 20 saves as the Jets (6-4-2) won their second consecutive game after dropping three in a row.

“He kind of saved our tail there for the first 10 minutes,” Jets interim coach Scott Arniel said about Hellebuyck. “St. Louis really came after us and he made some big stops and then some wild situations where he did get caught out of the net, some guys were playing road hockey goaltending.”

Winnipeg is 10-1-1 in its last 12 against St. Louis.

Robert Thomas and Brayden Schenn scored for the Blues (5-5-1), and Jordan Binnington stopped 32 of 36 shots.

“I think we had moments where we were very good,” St. Louis defenseman Nick Leddy said. “We created a lot of opportunities, but they capitalized on their opportunities and we didn’t.”

Perfetti scored his second goal of the season into an empty net with 2:28 remaining after Schenn got his second this season 8:08 into the third period.

Connor scored his second goal of the game and team-leading eighth of the season 1:02 into the third period on a feed from Scheifele as Binnington scrambled back into the crease after trying to play the puck behind the net. That expanded Winnipeg’s lead to 4-1.

Iafallo assisted on the Jets’ first four goals.

“Tonight it seemed like any time he had the puck he would make a play to someone in the slot or create a chance or get the puck back by himself,” Connor said. “You can tell he was feeling it tonight.”

Connor scored his first of the game on a shot that deflected off the blade of Leddy’s stick on a power play 4:34 into the second period to give the Jets a 3-1 lead.

“The second period, we needed more,” Blues coach Craig Berube said. “We needed to come out with a real purpose in the second period and we didn’t do that. To me, that’s the difference in the game.”

Thomas fired a shot through traffic past Hellebuyck to cut St. Louis’ deficit in half 40 seconds after Pionk put Winnipeg up 2-0 with his first goal of the season with 3:45 remaining in the first.

It was an emotional moment for Pionk and the entire Jets team a day after he delivered a eulogy at the funeral of former teammate and roommate Adam Johnson, who died after being slashed in the throat by a skate blade during a game in the United Kingdom more than a week ago.

“It was big,” Arniel said. “I know it hit him on the bench there after he did it. I think everybody I know felt it a little bit. It’s been a really tough week and a half, two weeks for him. The thing is, he’s played great hockey for us. It’s probably been a little bit of a release for him to get on the ice and just play and kind of maybe not think about those things.”

Scheifele one-timed a pass from Iafallo for his fifth goal of the season on a power play to put Winnipeg on top 8:44 into the game.

St. Louis failed to convert on its only power play, dropping to an NHL-worst 1 for 28 (3.6%) with the man advantage this season.


Jets: Host the Nashville Predators to open a five-game homestand Thursday night.

Blues: Host the Arizona Coyotes to close a four-game homestand Thursday night.



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