Although the Winnipeg Jets were just two points behind the Washington Capitals by game-time on Sunday, the Carolina Hurricanes stormed into MTS Centre and matched the Jets' usual home-intensity to pull out a tough 4-3 win.
Carolina set the tone early, scoring first on a Jussi Jokinen shorthanded goal at the 7:43 mark of the first period. Exactly four minutes later, though, Nik Antropov took advantage of a bouncing puck after a few unsuccessful tap-ins from his teammates to knot the game at one.
Eric Staal notched his 20th goal of the season on the power play early into the next period; however, following the marker, Patrick Dwyer's stick caught Tobias Enstrom in the face. Enstrom paused, holding his face, while his teammate, Spencer Machacek, went after Dwyer and the two instantly dropped the gloves. After killing the penalty and then putting pressure on the 'Canes, Antti Miettinen scored twice for his first and second goals of the season to give the Jets the 3-2 lead.
It appeared as though Winnipeg was going to hold on for the win, but one miscue led to another Staal goal, tying up the score. With 1:53 left, Carolina won 16 of 19 faceoffs in the third period. This would become especially important, as the game-winning goal came off of a play after the Hurricanes won the faceoff. Once the 'Canes entered the zone after the faceoff win, the puck redirected off of Staal's stick on to Chad LaRose's stick after Dustin Byfuglien attempted to poke-check it away. LaRose then got around the Jets' defenders to push Carolina to a late 4-3 win on the road.