WINNIPEG, Manitoba (AP) — Devin Setoguchi was hiding his face Friday night after his two goals lifted the Winnipeg Jets to a 4-3 win over the slumping Vancouver Canucks.
He was wearing a player of the game pilot's helmet, complete with darkened visor, that the team has come up with as a new locker room tradition.
"This time of year you've got to find a way," Setoguchi said of his timely goals, which ended his seven-game goal-scoring drought.
"They're ahead of us in the standings and the other night Nashville was and we let one slip away there. And if we're going to try and crawl back up in this thing we're going to have to make big wins late in the season here."
Zach Bogosian and Michael Frolik also scored for the Jets. Captain Andrew Ladd picked up two assists.
Alexander Edler, Ryan Kesler and Jason Garrison scored for the Canucks. Daniel Sedin picked up an assist, but his goal drought has stretched to 15 games.
The win means the Jets have won seven of the nine games they've played since Paul Maurice took over as head coach.
"I'm really happy for him, it's been a tough stretch of games," Maurice said of Setoguchi's performance.
Not much changed in the standings however. With Nashville's 3-2 overtime win over New Jersey on Friday, the Jets remain a point behind tied in the Central Division cellar.
And, despite the loss, the Canucks are in eighth place and cling to the final wild-card playoff spot in the Western Conference with 63 points.
Phoenix is at 60 points, but things are tightening up with Winnipeg and Dallas both at 57 points and Nashville at 58.
It was also the last game Vancouver has to play without head coach John Tortorella behind the bench, as his suspension for his actions before and after a brawl with the Calgary Flames ends this weekend.
Eddie Lack, in goal instead of Robert Luongo, made a lot of great saves to keep Vancouver in the game as the Jets outshot the Canucks 34-26.
"Their goalie made some huge saves for them to keep them in it," Ladd said.
Lack said it was tough to start the game by giving up the first goal. Though they battled back and twice tied it up, they couldn't pull ahead.
"It's not the first time that happened for us and it kind of feels like we're talking about the same thing," he said.