Random Thoughts From Motown Mitch: Mar. 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 went 2-1 this week but let one slip away AGAIN by giving up the game-winning goal to the Sharks with five seconds left.  The Jets just finished a tough eight-game stretch where they played Nashville, Columbus, Tampa, Carolina, Washington, San Jose, Boston, and Calgary with a 5-3 record but yet it could have been and should have been better.  Although this team likes to fritter away points they still have a one-point lead on the Preds with two games in hand.  Their record is 42-25-4.  

2.  Moose:  The Manitoba Moose continued their homestand last week with three games but only managed to secure three points.   The Moose are running out of games to get into the final playoff position in the division and can’t afford to drop too many more games.  The Moose are still hanging around with a record of 30-27-4-2.  

3.  Jets:  Sami Niku is slowing but surely making a case for being in the starting six defencemen once everybody gets healthy.  This upcoming 3-game road trip will be a test for him having to play against three pretty physical teams in their buildings.

4.  JetsRight now I am very down on Kyle Connor.

5.  Jets:  When will Paul Maurice (or is it Jamie Kompon) stop being stubborn and give Sami Niku a shot on the powerplay?      

6.  NHL:  This has got to be the worst interpretation of a match-penalty I have ever seen called by an NHL official.  This WASN’T even a penalty never mind a match penalty.  ABSOLUTELY RIDICULOUS!  

7.  JetsI don’t think Jets fans are as optimistic about a cup run as they were last year.  This team’s play has put a little more doubt in our minds.  I would like to see the Jets finish off the regular season very strong, wrap up first place in the division, and get healthy.  I’m not sure we can judge this team until then.     

8.  PGA:  Once again Tiger has become the center of the universe for the networks even when he isn’t a factor in the tournament.

9.  WTA:  In October of 2018, Canadian tennis pro, Bianca Andreescu was ranked 243 in the WTA rankings and in six short months she has moved all the way up to 24th after an amazing win at Indian Wells this past weekend.  This is an absolutely terrific achievement for the 18-year-old Canadian.  She started the tournament as a wildcard and won a tournament that is considered by many to be the women’s fifth major.  Andreescu defeated former world #1, Angelique Kerber in three sets.  WOW!      

10.  Jets:  Connor Hellebuyck always seems to find a way to be positive about his game even when he hasn’t played particularly well.  I’m not sure if this is a good thing or a bad thing?  Probably good?   

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11.  Jets:  Is anybody else a little disappointed in Adam Lowry’s 9 goals and 9 assists in 67 games? 

12:  Raptors:  How can you lose to Cleveland by 25 points? 

13:  Podcast 089:  Click here >>>> Podcast 089

14:  Goaltending:

  • Conner Hellebuyck:  30-20-2 … 2.97 GAA … .910 SV%             
  • Laurent Brossoit:  12-5-2 … 2.45 GAA … .929 SV%

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

  • PP:  5th at 25.60% up from 25.10% last week.    
  • PK: 23rd at 79.30% up from 24th at 78.90 last week.   

16:  NHL:  I think NHL officials should have to go in front of a discipline committee just like the players when they screw up.  (see #6)

17:  Jets:  I’m glad to see Kristian Vesalainen has reported to the Manitoba Moose.  This was a no-brainer and it will further his development and should be a boost for the Moose playoff drive. 

18:  Jets:  I’m still on the fence when it comes to Jack Roslovic.  I don’t know what he is. 

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. Re: #4: I think Connor has a real “nose” for the net and is a finisher. He has 11 PP goals, which is second on the team behind Laine, and is actually one ahead of Scheifele. I agree that he’s underused in their PP scheme, but I don’t blame Connor. To me, the Jets currently run a 3 versus 4 PP, with Trouba as the indecisive point man, with Laine and Wheeler on either side. Scheifele and Connor just act as decoys in the middle. There definitely needs to be more touches for Connor at the bottom of the configuration.
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