Random Thoughts On The Winnipeg Jets: Dec. 30


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 Ice, Winnipeg Blue Bombers, Minnesota Vikings, Arizona Cardinals, Notre Dame Fighting Irish, 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 warn

1. Jets:  The Winnipeg Jets had a poor week going 0-2-1 and next week won’t be any easier with games against Colorado (away), Toronto (home), and Minnesota (away).  The good guys now have a 21-15-3 record and are barely clinging to a wild-card position.  

2. Jets:  It’s that time of the years for the U20 WJC and the Jets have two prospects in the tournament.  The Winnipeg Jets loaned their second-round pick from a couple of years ago, forward David Gustafsson to team Sweden.  Last year Gustafsson had three assists in five games.  This year he was named an alternate captain and should have a more expanded role.  Jets 2019 first-round pick, Ville Heinola will also be playing in his second U20 WJC for Finland.  At last year’s tournament, Heinola recorded a goal and an assist in five games.

3. Jets:  The Winnipeg Jets seem to be having a hard time counting to 5 as in only 5 skaters on the ice at one time.  How many “too many men on the ice” penalties can one team take?  I think it is time for the coaches running the bench to get their heads out of their collective asses.   

4. Jets:  I don’t like to complain about coaching because it serves no purpose but Paul Maurice needs to get his head out of his ass and make sure #27 IS THE FIRST OFF THE BENCH IN OVERTIME.  It makes absolutely no sense why your best zone entry guy isn’t on the ice with all that room.  Maybe when this is happening one of the three stooges on the bench should say something and not stand there like freeking statues.  Nikolaj “don’t call me Nik”  Ehlers not being on the ice during 3 on 3 is COACHING MALPRACTICE!  

5. NHL:  The officials – I am so done with the offside challenges and reviews.  When something isn’t working the way it was intended to work it should be fixed ASAP… NOT when the league and governors or GMs get together for their annual drunk fest in Boca Raton or Pebble Beach.  Gary Bettman is a joke as a commissionaire.

6. Jets:  After losing our home and home series with the Blues it would be really easy to overreact but it is games like those that show me how much I miss old-time hockey where forwards finish checks and wear down the opposition’s defencemen.  Watching Connor, Roslovic, Scheifele, Appleton fly-bys makes me feel sorry for our defencemen that get wall-papered every shift on the forecheck.  Just because we’re named “Jets” doesn’t mean we have to lead the league in fly-bys.           

7. NHL:  The burning question on a national hockey tv show last week was “will Auston Matthews score a lacrosse style goal this season?”  This is the type of riveting journalism we are subjected to during daytime hockey chat.  

8. Jets:  The Dustin Byfuglien watch:  We have a “BUFFARAZZI” update.  I was told by a guy who knows a guy, that knows another guy, that knows his cousin, that knows his neighbour, that knows someone at TNSE that told him that Buff will play for the Jets this season.  That is some solid intel. 


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9. Jets:  I would like to see a little less B and B.  Beaulieu and Bitetto.  They are both okay in very very small spurts but as a regular third pairing, they are not good.      

10. Pet Peeve:  Today’s millennial hockey players that think because they have the ability to put up points that they don’t have to play defence or compete and when a coach asks these players to give a little more the coach is an a-hole.  No such thing as accountability in today’s NHL.      

11. TSN:  I thought when the CFL football season ended we had seen the last of the Reklaws but somehow they have made their way onto the WJC hockey broadcasts.  WHAT IS GOING ON?        

12. Jets:  Is it just me or does it seem like the St. Louis Blues get a lot of lucky bounces and Jordan Binnington still has a giant horseshoe up his ass?  

13. NHL:  Do you ever wonder why there is so much talk about playing on back-to-back nights in the NHL but yet the NBA does it all the time and NBA teams have fewer players and running is a lot harder than skating.    

14. Jets:  Connor Hellebuyck has been terrific all season but he let in TWO softies versus the Blues on Friday night and it was probably the difference in the game.  St. Louis doesn’t need any freebies.    

15. This week:

  • Manitoba Moose – Dec. 31, Jan. 3, 4
  • Winnipeg Jets – Dec. 30, Jan. 1, 4, 5
  • Winnipeg Ice – Dec. 31, Jan. 2, 4

16. Goaltending:

  • Conner Hellebuyck: 17-11-3 … 2.55 GAA … .923 SV% … 3 shutouts.  
  • Laurent Brossoit: 4-4-0 … 3.51 GAA … .888 SV%

17. Special Teams:  Rule of thumb. Have the two red numbers (PK and PP) total at least 100% when added. (as your minimum) I also base the movement (up or down) on the % and not the NHL ranking.

  • PP: 18th at 18.50% up from 19th at 18.10%
  • PK: 30th at 72.30% down from 73.80%
  • FO: 10th at 50.50% down from 9th at 51.10%

18. Jets:  Remember when the Jets were a big, fast, heavy team that was hard to play against?  I miss those days.  We are so soft now it is embarrassing.

19. Jets:  Jack Roslovic’s three points in his last fourteen games confirms my belief that he is not a top-six forward?  He can skate and he looks pretty but he accomplishes SFA.  

20. Jets:  Whoever is running/coaching the Jets PK unit needs to be removed from that responsibility.  The Jets PK is killing this team. (Pun intended)            

In memory of my friend Darryl Manchulenko.

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Thanks, Mitch

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