Winnipeg Jets fans are hoping to help reverse the home-ice disadvantage tonight, as the team heads into Game 5 against the visiting St. Louis Blues.
After losing the first two games at home, the Jets stole both games on the road from the Blues to even the first-round series at 2-2.
“We’ve got this series under control now,” said Jets fan RoxaneWiebe before Thursday’s game.
“Everyone is feeling a lot more optimistic about what the end result is going to be, some big players, big names have come up and performed well.”
The Jets and Blues are back on level terms thanks to a goal by Kyle Connor in overtime Tuesday night, which gave the Jets a 2-1 win. The entire top line played well, with Mark Scheifele Kyle Connor both scoring and registering an assist, while captain Blake Wheeler picked up two assists.
Heading into the playoffs, star forward, PatrikLaine’s scoring slump was the talk of the town, but since the start of the post-season the Finn has silenced his critics.
Through four games, Laine has amassed four points (3 goals, 1 assist) with everyone, including head coach Paul Maurice taking notice.
Maurice called Laine’s Game 4 performance the best game he’s ever seen him play.
Another thing for the Jets to hang their hats on in Game 4 was how often they were able to test the Blues’ rookie netminder, Jordan Binnington. It was the first time the team was able to get more than 30 shots towards the net, outshooting the Blues 39-32.
Fan Donovan Sliziak believes the Jets have the Blues on their heels.
“I’m stoked, we’ve got them right where we want them, we’ve went in dominated them, they gave it their all, we dominated,” he said.
Sliziak feels the momentum favours the Jets, and the team has what it takes to win on home ice for Game 5.
“They’ve got their home base behind them now, they’ve won and they’re in playoff mode.”
Winnipeg is hoping the raucous, sold-out crowd in and outside Bell MTS Place will help them to the first home-ice win of the series.
Struggles at home
The team’s success throughout the season was largely bolstered by their strong performance on home ice — going 25-12-4 — but the team faltered heading into the playoffs.
The Jets lost three games in Winnipeg before the end of the season, and have continued their recent home struggles in the playoffs, where their record has fallen to 1-6 in their past seven games.
Given their poor form at home, Jets fans are anxious, but also optimistic, that they’ll be looking for the series clincher when Game 6 goes Saturday from St. Louis.
“I think we win Game 5, and we win it all on the road,” said Wiebe.
“It doesn’t go more than six,” added Sliziak.
Game 7, if needed will be held back in Winnipeg on Monday.