The red-hot Winnipeg Jets try for their seventh victory in the last eight games when they complete a four-game road trip against the San Jose Sharks on Saturday. Winnipeg routed Anaheim 4-1 on Friday as the No. 2 line centered by Bryan Little with Nikolaj Ehlers and Patrik Laine on the wings combined for three goals and four assists, and goaltender Connor Hellebuyck improved to 12-2-2 after making 30 saves.
“You can tell that everyone is supporting each other and no one is taking a shift off. It’s huge, and it builds confidence in the team,” Hellebuyck told reporters after helping the Jets improve to 7-3-2 on the road. San Jose fell to 1-2-2 in its last five games after a 5-4 overtime loss at Vegas on Friday as the struggling Sharks’ offense scored four or more goals for only the fifth time in 21 games this season. San Jose defenseman Brent Burns, the reigning Norris Trophy winner, celebrated his 900th game Friday by scoring his first goal of the season after netting 27 and 29 in the last two years. “There’s still a lot of things we can improve on,’’ Sharks forward Joonas Donskoi told reporters. “We’re playing well. The only thing we have to fix is we have to play 60 minutes.”
TV: 10 p.m. ET, Sportsnet (Winnipeg), NBCSN California (San Jose)
ABOUT THE JETS (14-5-3): Laine has seven goals and four assists in 11 November games while Ehlers (three goals, five assists) and Little (two, five) are also producing during that span, prompting Ehlers to tell reporters that “it’s great for our line, and great for the team.” Top-liners Mark Scheifele and Blake Wheeler share the team lead with 25 points apiece while Scheifele and Laine each have a club-most 11 goals. Coach Paul Maurice announced after Friday’s game that Steve Mason (2-3-1, 3.31 goals-against average, .907 save percentage), who won his last two games including 2-1 at Los Angeles on Wednesday, will start Saturday.
ABOUT THE SHARKS (11-8-2): Joe Thornton recorded a pair of assists Friday, moving him past Joe Sakic and into 12th on the all-time list with 1,017. Martin Jones could be back in goal Saturday since he was pulled Friday after allowing three goals on 14 shots or Aaron Dell, who stopped 17-of-19 shots in relief, might get the call. Melker Karlsson missed his third straight game Friday with an upper-body injury.
1. Winnipeg is 13-for-36 on the power play in November, scoring in nine of the 11 games.
2. San Jose entered Friday leading the NHL in penalty killing at 89.7 percent before yielding two power-play goals Friday, allowing more than one such goal in a game for only the second time this campaign and first since the season opener.
3. The Sharks won all three meetings last season while the road team has been victorious five of the last six encounters.
PREDICTION: Jets 3, Sharks 2