Sam Gagner gets 500th NHL points for defeating Red Wings Jets

Winnipeg – Sam Gagner recorded his 500th NHL career point with a shorthand goal and the Detroit Red Wings added an empty net to help the Winnipeg Jets beat 3-1 on Wednesday.

Michael Rasmussen broke the tie 1-1 at 9:11 in the third period.

The win gave Detroit coach Jeff Blaschill 200 wins as NHL head coach.

Dylan Larkin had a pair of assists and Thomas stopped 32 shots for Greece Wings (28-34-9), who had beaten Boston 5-3 the night before.

Mark Sheffield has scored for the Jets (33-28-10), who have lost three in a row.

Connor Hellebuyck made 32 saves for Winnipeg, ending a three-game home stand (0-2-0) against the Colorado Avalanche on Friday.

Winnipeg welcomes leading-scorer Kyle Connor and defender Net Schmidt after their duties in the COVID-19 protocol.

Detroit led 1-0 after the first period and drew 1-1 in the second period.

The Jets pressed the Wings for most of the first season, but Winnipeg’s fortunes changed unexpectedly when they went to the power play at 18:19.

Larkin got the puck and quickly sent a pass to Gagner on the side of the net, who beat Helebuke at 18:40.

It was the third game in a row for the Jets to give up a shorthand goal.

The Jets outscored the Wings 13-5 early on, with Greece blocking some standard Winnipeg scoring chances.

Goalkeeper Schmidt stood next to the one-timer, twice denied Paul Stastney intimate, and Blake Wheeler did a glove save on the breakaway.

Schmidt factored in Winnipeg’s tie, as this time his shot from the point was caught by Sheffield at 6:01.

The Jets looked to be in the lead when Wheeler deflected Dylan Dimelo’s shot at 9:44, but Wings successfully challenged for offside and the goal was snatched.

Wings responded with a pair of shots hitting the post, one by Lucas Raymond and the other by Jacob Vrana at a break.

The goal shot was 22-22 after the second.

Wings got their second power play of the game at 5:15, but Helebuyuk faced three shots.

When Rasmussen broke the tie and picked up a loose puck at the crease, Jets forward Zach Sandford was dinged with a four-minute double minor for high-sticking at 13:16.

Gagner scored his 11th goal of the season at 19:23.

The Jets are fighting for a play-off in the Western Conference. They are sitting with 6 points. The inactive Nashville Predators have the first wild-card spot with 84 points. The Dallas Stars have 83 and are in second place, but are not playing on Wednesday. The Vegas Golden Knights had 82 points before hosting the Vancouver Canucks (74 points) in the late game.

Detroit hosts Columbus Blue Jacket on Saturday.

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