Kyle Connor score twice, Jets beat Maple Leafs 4-2 in finale

Sports

WINNIPEG, Manitoba (AP)Kyle Connor scored twice and the Winnipeg Jets beat the Toronto Maple Leafs 4-2 on Friday night in the regular-season finale for both teams.

”It’s always good for confidence, everyone loves to score,” Connor said.

Mason Appleton and Jansen Harkins, with an empty-netter, also scored and Connor Hellebuyck made 34 saves to help the Jets finish 30-23-3.

Pierre Engvall and Ilya Mikheyev scored and Jack Campbell stopped 20 shots for North Division champion Toronto. The Maple Leafs finished 35-14-7.

Toronto gave forward Mitch Marner the night off, with Adam Brooks taking his spot on a line with Auston Matthews and Alex Galchenyuk.

The game meant little as both teams already have their first-round playoff matches set.

The Jets start their first-round series with the Oilers on Wednesday night in Edmonton, while the Maple Leafs welcome Montreal for Game 1 on Thursday night – the first postseason meeting between the Original Six rivals since 1979.

”Looking forward to it, kind of a sense of excitement in that room,” Jets coach Paul Maurice said. ”You win a game, feel good, and you get to play fun games now.”

”You go through the regular season and the grind of it to get to the playoffs,” Spezza said. ”For me, I think our team is very excited to play in the playoffs. I think we’re built for the playoffs. I think we’re a team that has a chance to have a lot of success. Now we’re just getting excited to get going.”

Winnipeg had an early scare when forward Paul Stastny was hit into the end boards by Toronto defenseman Justin Holl on the game’s first shift. He went to the dressing room before returning later in the period. He stuck around for the second and had 7:47 of ice time, but didn’t return for the third.

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