Pittsburgh, PA (SportsNetwork.com) - Patric Hornqvist returned to the lineup and scored the game-winning goal during the third period to lift the Pittsburgh Penguins to a 5-3 win over Winnipeg Jets on Tuesday.
Hornqvist, who missed 11 games due to a lower-body injury, finished with two goals, David Perron had a goal and an assist and Steve Downie and Nick Spaling also scored for the Penguins, who ended a four-game skid.
"I thought we were playing a great game," Pittsburgh head coach Mike Johnston said. "Wins are critical, but it's how your team is playing."
Kris Letang also came back for Pittsburgh after sitting out the final game prior to the All-Star break with a concussion and tallied a career-high five assists. Thomas Greiss made 19 saves in the win.
Adam Lowry and Chris Thorburn each posted a goal and an assist. Jacob Trouba also lit the lamp and Evander Kane supplied three helpers as the Jets' five- game winning streak came to an end. Ondrej Pavelec stopped 25 shots in defeat.
"We were able to get a couple leads throughout the course of the game, but weren't able to hold them," said Thorburn. "It's unfortunate."
Pittsburgh has won its last six games against the Jets and owns a 14-game unbeaten streak at home against them that dates back to March 24, 2007, when they were the Atlanta Thrashers.
Hornqvist put the Penguins ahead for good on the power play as he was stationed in front and whacked the puck past Greiss for a 4-3 Penguins lead 7:52 into the third period.
Winnipeg pulled Pavelec with over a minute remaining and Hornqvist scored on the empty net with 28 seconds left to seal the win.
Perron skated down below the goal line and slipped a pass into the slot, where Spaling tapped the puck into the net to open the scoring 7:09 into the game.
Just over two minutes into the second, Thorburn crashed the net and tipped in Lowry's lead pass past Greiss' blocker for a tied game.
Winnipeg went in front 2-1 on Trouba's blast from the point that went past a screened Greiss with 7:13 remaining in the middle stanza.
Letang blasted a shot from the right circle and Downie buried the rebound past Pavelec for a tied game with 4.6 seconds left in the second.
The Jets didn't wait long to reclaim their lead as Lowry beat Greiss with a wrister 59 seconds into the final frame, but Perron tipped the puck through the pads of Pavelec for a power-play goal and a 3-3 score at 4:23.
Pittsburgh forwards Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin were both absent from the lineup due to lower-body injuries ... Letang registered his 200th career assist on Spaling's marker and became the second Penguins defenseman to record at least five in a game. Ron Stackhouse tallied six on March 8, 1975 ... Pittsburgh is now 21-5-5 when scoring first ... Pavelec is 2-13-1 in his career against the Penguins.