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Home / Sports / Big Buff has Winnipeg jets on the edge of the 1st West Finals

Big Buff has Winnipeg jets on the edge of the 1st West Finals



NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) Dustin Byfuglien has interrupted his dance moves for a small celebration of his last big goal that may have surprised many people.

Not his teammates.

"He's so laid back before the games," said Winnipeg Center Bryan Little. "He's a joker, definitely the joker in the team, it's weird that he's talking to you in front of the camera, it's like,` That's not who I know. # [19659004] Article Below …

The 6-foot-5, 260-pound Byfuglia makes a big impression on the NHL playoffs on both ends of the ice as the jets make their way to a win over Winnipeg's first berth in the Western Conference Timely Goals, Robust Defense, Leadership ̵

1; all this is part of his game – he dropped Kiefer against the carnivores during the second round by handling literally two Nashville players, one in each hand.

His Journey Back to the postseason was a long but 33-year-old Byfuglien made Winnipeg his home and is a major reason that the Jets are Canada's last surviving squad this off season. "The last Canadian team to win the Stanley Cup was Montreal in 1993 , and the 2 5-year drought is a painful in the home of hockey.

Winnipeg captain Blake Wheeler considers Byfuglien a "great equalizer" and unlike anyone else in the NHL

"Having him in our team gives us an advantage no matter who we play," said Wheeler. "That's the kind of player he is and he's dominated from the first playoff game – you can not stop it."

Byfuglien is making the most of his post-season run since joining Chicago in the Stanley Cup in 2010 helped.

He was not only a strong opponent of Nashville, but often played a group The best four best defenders of the NHL, Byfuglien, leading all defenders with four goals in this postseason. He is also tied with Boston Torey Krug for most points with 12, while skating on average 26 minutes, 25 seconds per game.

Byfuglien started the Jets' Rally in Game 3 against Nashville from a 0-0 deficit with the first goal and his binding goal led to his little dance. After winnipeg's 6-2 win on Saturday night, he had led the game to victory, causing the jets to win only their second series – the entire postseason.

"What makes him unique is that he can." I know if "take over" is right, but he can work as well as possible in a game, "said Winnipeg coach Paul Maurice. "He can defend, he can really play physically, nobody wants to drop the gloves with him, and then there's an offensive side, it's a perfectly placed shot, quick hands, all the other things he can do offensively."

And Chicago gave all this potential in 2010. Byfuglien moved from defense to striker for the Blackhawks and scored three game-winning goals in a San Jose in the Western Conference final for the franchise's first Stanley Cup final He had a hat-trick against Vancouver in the conference semi-final.

But the Blackhawks were ranked for salary after contract extensions for Jonathan Toews, Patrick Kane and Duncan Keith for too expensive deals for Marian Hossa and Brian Campbell fes tgeschnallt. Byfuglien was sold to the then Atlanta Thrashers, a franchise that moved to Winnipeg in 2011.

"There is only one Dustin Byfuglien, and you want him in your team," said Little. "You can not imagine what it would be like to play against him, there is only one of them, you can not really compare him to anyone."

Winnipeg is home to Byfuglien. The city is just 115 miles as the crow flies from where he grew up in Roseau, Minnesota. Since the franchise moved to Winnipeg, Byfuglien married and has three children. The Jets rewarded him in February 2016 with a $ 38 million five-year contract that would make him a key piece of the jet's future.

He's just not a big speaker. Asked where his dance came from in Game 2, Byfuglien said he did not know.

He certainly talks to his team-mates, trying to share his experience from this 2010 cup and giving advice on how to handle what he hopes will be a two-month run

"We obviously talked as a group," said Byfuglien , "It will not be an easy journey, you just need one game after the other, one layer at a time, and just believe in each other."

Big Buff certainly has a confidence boost,

"Every time he goes up it's dangerous, "Little said.

More AP NHL: https://apnews.com/tag/NHLhockey

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