Hellebuyck leads Jets, tie American record for goalie wins
WINNIPEG, Manitoba (AP) — Connor Hellebuyck made 31 saves to tie the record for victories in a season by an American goalie and the Winnipeg Jets beat the Calgary Flames 2-1 on Thursday night for their fourth straight victory.
Hellebuyck has 43 victories to match the mark set by former Pittsburgh star Tom Barrasso in 1992-93.
Blake Wheeler scored his 23rd goal for his 90th point of the season, and Paul Stastny added a goal to help Winnipeg improve to 10-1-0 in its past 11 and 51-20-10 overall. Rookie Spencer Foo scored his first NHL goal in his third game for the Flames.
Winnipeg will play the Minnesota Wild in the first round of the NHL playoffs after Nashville beat Washington 4-3 earlier Thursday to clinch top spot in the Central Division and Western Conference with 115 points.
Jon Gillies stopped 24 shots for Calgary. The Flames are 1-9-0 in their past 10 games.
Wheeler scored with 47 seconds left in the first, tipping Dustin Byfuglien’s shot from the point
Wheeler, who has five goals and 14 points in his past 11 games, became the fourth player in franchise history to hit the 90-point mark, and first since Ilya Kovalchuk in 2008-09. His previous career high was 78 points two years ago.
Jets rookie Kyle Connor assisted on Wheeler’s goal, giving him 15 points (eight goals, seven assists) in his past 12 games.
Ben Chiarot made a patient play to set up Stastny’s goal, waiting for the veteran to cut toward the net and then sending a pass to his stick for the redirection and 2-0 lead at 12:59.
Jets: Host Chicago on Saturday night to wrap up the regular season.
Flames: Host Vegas on Saturday night in the finale.