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Patrik Laine gets third hat trick of season as Jets defeat Stars

Winnipeg Jets centre Mark Scheifele (55) and right wing Patrik Laine (29) celebrate Laine's second goal of the game against the Dallas Stars during third period NHL hockey action in Winnipeg, Tuesday, February 14, 2017.


Jets rookie Patrik Laine had his third hat trick of the season, including the winner, as Winnipeg beat the Dallas Stars 5-2 on Tuesday night at MTS Centre.

Joel Armia and Blake Wheeler also scored as Winnipeg (26-29-4) snapped a four-game losing skid.

Jamie Benn and Tyler Seguin's second period goals for Dallas (22-26-10) erased a two-goal Jets lead.

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Connor Hellebuyck made 34 saves in his third straight start for the Jets since Ondrej Pavelec suffered a lower-body injury on Feb. 7, improving his record to 18-15-1 on the season.

Stars netminder Antti Niemi stopped 18 of the 21 shots he faced, dropping his personal mark to 10-9-4.

The victory also snaps a five-game home losing streak for the Jets, while Dallas suffers their sixth loss in their last seven games.

Laine's winner came with 5:07 left in the game before he then completed his hat trick just over four minutes later with Winnipeg's second empty-netter to put his total at 26 goals in his 51st game.

Laine opened the scoring late in the first period. Mark Scheifele forced a turnover in the Jets' zone and turned it up ice to Andrew Copp who evaded a sprawling defender, feeding Laine to tap in his 24th of the season.

Armia fired a one-timer from the high slot off a Shawn Matthias centreing pass as Winnipeg extended its lead at 7:38 of the second. Armia's fifth goal of the season is his second in the past four games — a stretch where the 23-year-old has four points.

Dallas cut the Jets lead in half just over a minute later as Benn completed a passing play from Jason Spezza and Seguin for his 19th of the season. With Winnipeg forward Nikolaj Ehlers off for hooking, the Stars found the equalizer on the power play at 13:35 of the second as Seguin's low wrist shot from the point found its way through traffic for his 21st.

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Wheeler's empty-net goal at 18:12 of the third is his 17th of the season.

Dallas and Winnipeg exchanged grade-A opportunities in the third. The Stars rang three shots off the post behind Hellebuyck, while Winnipeg's Nic Petan fired a one-timer wide of a gaping cage on the power play before Mathieu Perreault grazed the post with a wrist shot.

The Jets head east for four games on the road, beginning with the Pittsburgh Penguins on Thursday before Canadian stops in Montreal, Ottawa, and Toronto. The Stars wrap their four-game road trip through the Central Division on Thursday in Minnesota against the Western Conference leading Wild.

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