Random Thoughts From Motown Mitch: Feb. 18

Mitch Kasprick is the “Motown Curmudgeon” aka “Motown Mitch”

Odds and Ends, Thoughts and Questions, from this past week in sports – 

Just so there’s no confusion when I’m spewing my bias, I am a fan of the Winnipeg Jets, Arizona Coyotes, Manitoba Moose, Winnipeg Blue Bombers, Minnesota Vikings, Arizona Cardinals, Toronto Blue Jays, Arizona Diamondbacks, Winnipeg Goldeyes, Toronto Raptors, all curlers from Manitoba, and all Canadian athletes competing on the international stage. 

I am NOT a fan of Gary Bettman or as I call him, Count Chocula.  I am a big believer in the 7Ps.  You’ve been warned.

1.  Jets:  The Winnipeg Jets had another tough week.  It wasn’t a total disaster as they collected 3-points in three games but it was the way they played.  They look like a team waiting for the shoe to drop.  The NHL trade deadline can’t come fast enough for me.  The Jets have a three-point lead on the Preds and still have two games in hand.  Their record is still impressive at 36-19-4.  

2.  Moose:  The Manitoba Moose won two of three games this week and have worked themselves back into the playoff race.  The good news is they are currently five points out of fourth place with three games in hand.  The bad news is they still need to climb over two teams to get there.  The Moose are in seventh place in the AHL’s Central Division with a record of 24-22-3-2 and a winning percentage of .520.  

3.  Jets:  In a world of “what have you done for me lately” I would say the fan support for struggling winger Patrik Laine has been remarkable … for the most part.  A big thumbs up to Winnipeg Jets fans.       

4.  JetsBrandon Tanev (13) has more goals than Blake Wheeler (12).  I never thought I would ever see that. 

5.  Jets:  The Winnipeg Jets powerplay has masked a lot of the problems they have had throughout the season and especially at home where they have steamrolled teams BUT now that the PP has run dry the Jets are being exposed as a very poor 5 on 5 team. 

6.  NHL:  I really have no opinion on the Carolina Hurricanes post-game celebrations but to quote Sheryl Crow, “If it makes you happy it can’t be that bad”.   

7.  JetsThe Jets play a complicated defensive system that requires everybody to be on the same page and when it breaks down it looks really terrible.  I will never concede to any system where its okay for your back to be to the play.  I think the play should always be in front of you and it is asking a lot from a very young team to play in PoMo’s wacky system.  Stop trying to reinvent the wheel.    

8.  Raptors:  Raptors forward Pascal Siakam is continuing to add highlights to break through season.  On Wednesday night he put up a career-high 44 points and 10 boards.  This is the seventh time this season he has posted a career best. 

9.  NHL Trade Rumours The Mark Stone to Winnipeg trade rumours are out of control and now if the Jets don’t somehow acquire him there is going to be a huge THUD in this city.  

NHL Trade Deadline:  Feb. 25 at 2 pm local time.  Jake Muzzin was my top trade deadline target but he is now off the board.  I’m not sure who my top choice is now.  How about you? 

Who is on your trade deadline wish list?

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10.  Jets:  As a team, the Winnipeg Jets seem to be in a malaise right now BUT defenceman Tyler Myers is playing some of his best hockey of the season. 

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11.  NHL:  Right now the Tampa Bay Lighting are just toying with the rest of the National Hockey League.  They only have 11 loses and have a goal differential of PLUS 73.    

12:   WHT Podcast:  Podcast 086 >>>> HERE.  Darryl and I are joined by WHT favourite, Scott Campbell.

13:  Jets:  Question for Kevin Cheveldayoff:  Can you feel the mood of the fanbase going into next Monday’s trade deadline?  

14:  The Scotties:  This year, Team Manitoba is being represented by the Tracy Fleury rink out of the East St. Paul Curling Club.  Fleury is an import from Sudbury, ON and has taken over the Kerri Einarson rink.  I’m not a big fan of the import rule unless a player moves because of work and not because they want to make super teams.  I wonder if Tracy Fleury has even set foot in the ESP Curling club?    

15:  Women’s Hockey:  One of the best-kept secrets last week was the inaugural “Rivalry Series” between Canada and the USA that was on TSN.  It was outstanding hockey once again AND for the first time in a while, the Canadians bested their southern rivals, two games to one.  The strange thing about the 3-game series is none of the games went to overtime which has become a habit when these teams play.     

16:  Random Thought:  I think I’ve come as close to perfecting “Montreal Smoked Meat” as I’m going to get.  It’s a 12-day process but it is definitely worth it.    

17:  Blue Jays:  Would you rather have Vladdy Jr. for an extra two weeks to start the season or call him up in the middle of April and retain his rights for an extra year?  It really is a no-brainer, isn’t it?  I wish people outside of the Blue Jays organisation would shut their pie-holes and mind their own business and let the Jays run their team how they see fit.     

18:  Goaltending:

  • Conner Hellebuyck:  26-16-2 … 2.89 GAA … .911 SV%             
  • Laurent Brossoit:  10-3-2 … 2.41 GAA … .931 SV% 

19:  Special Teams:  Rule of thumb.  Have the two red numbers total at least 100% when added.  (as your minimum) 

  • PP:  4th at 24.70% down from 4th at 25.90% last week.    
  • PK:  21st at 79.20%  down from 14th at 80.50% last week.   

20:  Jets:  In spite of a couple shorthanded goals the Jets penalty killing unit has taken a beating lately and now joins the powerplay mired in a funk.  It is amazing this team is still in first place.  This upcoming three-game road could be scary.      

If you have any questions for Darryl or myself (Mitch) please give us a shout.  You can use the comment section or use the #ASKWHTPOD hashtag on Twitter.  

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If you have any thoughts on any of these comments or questions, please let me know.  We would love to hear your opinions.

Thanks, Mitch 


  1. Agree about positioning in our own end #7,7’s wild,agree with 17.If the Expos ever return, I will return to that fanbase.

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