Little scores in OT, Jets hand Ducks 11th straight loss
WINNIPEG, Manitoba (AP) — Amaheim general manager Bob Murray was quick to say he isn’t considering firing coach Randy Carlyle after the Ducks’ franchise-record 11th straight loss.
“While it’s not my preference to make comments on this topic during the season, our recent play has led to many questions. Our fans are frustrated, rightfully so, and deserve a response from me,” Murray said Sunday night after the Ducks’ 4-3 overtime loss to the Winnipeg Jets.
“At this time, I am not considering a coaching change. I am more focused on our players, specifically with who is going to step up in this situation. The way we played tonight was a step in the right direction, but we need much, much more. We have higher expectations for this group and they should expect more from themselves.”
Bryan Little scored at 4:49 of overtime to lift the Jets past the reeling Ducks.
“Tonight definitely wasn’t an easy one, though,” Little said. ”(Anaheim is) a desperate team and they played that way and it made it a really hard night for us. No part of that game is easy.”
Carlyle said the Jets got some “lucky bounces” and benefited from a missed slashing penalty by the Jets’ Mark Scheifele on Cam Fowler in overtime.
“You just have to multiply and duplicate efforts like tonight,” Carlyle said. “Because if we do that, we’ll have success. And I think we can do some things better.”
Blake Wheeler, Patrik Laine and Ben Chiarot also scored and Connor Hellebuyck made 28 saves to help the Jets improve to 5-2-0 in their last seven games. They have won four straight at home.
″(The Ducks) came in here guns blazing,” Wheeler said. “Obviously, it hasn’t been easy for them lately and they’ve got a lot of guys who have won a lot of games in this league and came out really hard and made it tough on us.”
Brian Gibbons, Rickard Rakell and Andrew Cogliano scored and John Gibson stopped 30 shots for the Ducks. They are 0-7-4 during the skid.
“Obviously, now with the stuff that we’re going through, people are only looking at the results,” Fowler said. “But we came in here, we played a great road game. If we continue to do that and we continue to put forth the effort we did tonight, then we’ll climb our way out of this thing.”
Chiarot tied it at 3 with 5:55 left in the third period with a bouncing shot that went past Gibson.
Anaheim led 2-1 after the first period and 3-2 after two.
Gibbons scored his first goal of the season at 2:19 of the first period when his pass attempt to Ryan Kesler at the front of the net went off Chiarot’s skate and past Hellebuyck. Rakell blasted a high shot into the net with 3:46 left in the period to make it 2-0.
With the Ducks’ Nick Richie off for holding, Jets forward Kyle Connor stood in front of Gibson to partially screen the goalie for Wheelers’ ninth goal of the season with a minute left in the period.
Laine, playing in his 200th NHL game, took a cross-ice pass from Little and one-timed his 25th goal past Gibson to tie it at 2 at 2:24 of the second. It was Laine’s first goal in seven games and fourth in 20 games.
Anaheim regained the lead after Cogliano went around the back of the net and fired a sharp-angled shot that went under Hellebuyck with 4:12 left in the second.
NOTES: Carter Rowney had three assists for the Ducks, and Daniel Sprong had two. ... Anaheim opened a five-game trip. ... Little and Scheifele each extended their points streaks to five games.
Ducks: At Detroit on Tuesday night.
Jets: Hosts Vegas on Tuesday night.
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