Random Thoughts On The Winnipeg Jets: June 28

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

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

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, and all Team Canada Hockey teams.

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. JetsWith the Winnipeg Jets season over I have started reflecting on this past season and the one thing that really jumps out at me is how far Sami Niku was buried down the Jets depth chart.  I’ve never been one of the fanatic #FreeNiku guys but in my humble opinion he should have played a hell of a lot more than he did in the past two seasons. 

2. Jets:  The Seattle Kraken expansion draft protection lists are tentatively due in approximately 3 weeks and Chevy is now under the microscope.  What will he and the Winnipeg Jets do?

Poll Question:  Should Kevin Cheveldayoff cut a deal with Seattle GM Ron Francis so the Jets don’t lose a player off their roster in the expansion draft? 

In the 2017 Vegas expansion draft the Jets and Vegas cut a deal where the Golden Knights would select Chris Thorburn’s expiring contract.  In the deal they flip-flopped 1st rounders with Winnipeg acquiring the 24th pick (from Vegas, from Columbus) in the 2017 NHL Draft in exchange for the 13th pick in the 2017 NHL Draft, and the Jets third-round selection in 2019. 

FYI:  If the Jets don’t cut this deal with Vegas they might have taken Nick Suzuki instead of trading down and getting Kristian Vesalainen.  It’s too early to call this deal but the early returns certainly favour Suzuki. 

Will Chevy or should Chevy cut a deal with Seattle GM Ron Francis so the Jets don't lose a player in the expansion draft?

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3. Jets:  With the Winnipeg Jets winning a round in the playoffs this year I thought their pick would be in the 20s but I was pleasantly surprised they are actually getting the 17th overall selection in the 2021 NHL Entry Draft.  I have a feeling Jets fans will be happy Chevy didn’t piss away this pick for a playoff rental.

 4. NHL:  I guess Gary “Count Chocula” Bettman just passively aggressively let Canadians, the CBC, and Sportsnet know where they stand in the grand scheme of things when the NHL released the schedule for the Stanley Cup Finals.


A Canadian team in the Stanley Cup Final and no games for Canadians on “Hockey Night in Canada”?  

I guess this is Gary’s punishment for Canada and the Montreal Canadiens for knocking out “HIS” team in Vegas.    

5. Jets:  Watching Vegas struggle with the Habs in the 3rd round made me feel a little bit better about how the Jets lost them.  I thought Vegas or Colorado would demolish whoever came out of the Canadian Division but I was obviously wrong.  That didn’t feel very good coming out of my mouth LOL.     

6. NHL:  I hope Seattle fans aren’t expecting a similar team to what Vegas got in their expansion year.  I don’t think NHL GMs will get duped as bad this time around …. or will they?   

7. Jets:  I know I’m probably in the minority now but I wouldn’t be in a great hurry to part ways with Sami Niku.  Unlike others, I don’t buy into the narrative that Niku had his chance here in Winnipeg.  Defencemen can take longer to hit their stride and players with Niku’s offensive game don’t grow on trees. 

Sami Niku has had some bad luck (car accident) and untimely injuries that have factored into his lack of playing time but I think Paul Maurice has mishandled Niku as well while committing to players like Anthony Bitetto, Nate Beaulieu, Derek Forbort, and Jordy Benn because they can kill penalties.    

Winnipeg’s biggest problem is transition and they are willing to throw away a puck-mover?  Ridiculous.  Sami Niku was the 2017-18 Eddie Shore Award winner as the AHL’s outstanding defenceman and at 24-years-old hasn’t even reached his prime.  I think it would be a huge mistake to give him away for nothing.  (see #1)

8. JetsI wonder how much money the Jets lost this season and I wonder if the NHL or TNSE will release figures to the public?  

9. Jets Pascal Vincent has a new job and its not with the Winnipeg Jets but with the Columbus Blue Jackets.  He will be joining Brad Larsen’s staff as an associate coach in charge of the Columbus power play.  I liked him and thought he was a very good coach for the Manitoba Moose.  Did the Jets miss the boat by not promoting him here?  

10. Jets:  I’m sensing there are a more than a few Jets fans that are starting to turn on Mark Scheifele.  This would be a serious mistake in my humble opinion.  Even though we all acknowledge that Nikolaj “don’t call me Nik” Ehlers had an outstanding year and was the team’s best forward this past season, Scheif is still their #1 center and probably one of their most important players along with Connor Hellebuyck.  Say what you want about Mark Scheifele but 21 goals, 42 assists, for 63 points in 56 games is nothing to sneeze at.  


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11. Jets:  The more and more I watch the playoffs and see what is going uncalled and being let go without supplemental discipline the more I realize George Parros and the NHL royally screwed Mark Scheifele and the Winnipeg Jets. 

The DOPS (Department of Player Safety) pretended to give a shit and make it look like they were changing their standards by making an example of a star player like Scheifele.  They picked a player in a small market, with a small voice, and outside of Winnipeg, a team that nobody gives a shit about. 


12. NHL:  Key dates.

  • June 2 – NHL Draft Lottery (Buffalo won)
  • July 15 – The latest the Stanley Cup can be awarded
  • July 17 – Expansion draft protection lists tentatively due
  • July 21 – Expansion draft
  • July 23-24 – 2021 NHL Entry Draft
  • July 28 – Free agency opens

13. Jets:  Are Paul Maurice’s or Kevin Cheveldayoff’s jobs in jeopardy?

After being swept in the second round by Montreal should heads roll?

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14. NHLRemember when most hockey experts/fans thought the Habs got ripped off in the PK Subban/Shea Weber trade? 

15. Jets:  Is the 31st or 32nd overall pick really a 1st rounder or for that matter is a pick in the mid-20s a 1st rounder?  Expansion certainly has cheapened the term 1st-rounder.  

In memory of my friend Darryl Manchulenko.

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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. Hi Mitch…I agree solidly with your points #4, 5, and 11. Bettman continues to cowtow to the American owners, and it certainly looks like that perpetual sour face on this weasel just scrunched up more when Vegas lost. I also predicted that the Habs would loose to Vegas, but I’m glad for my serving of crow. As for Parros, didn’t he use to play for Montreal back in the day as their resident knuckle dragger? This is the most inept guy in charge of player safety.
    I wonder why Maurice didn’t play our younger players more, like Montreal is doing…some of the old vets couldn’t keep up with the tempo of the game Montreal threw at them. My son, who coached junior, told me the 1-4 system is hard to play against when it is executed properly, and it requires a lot of dicipline.

    • Mitch Kasprick says

      Hey Les, Montreal had a good game plan that worked well for them BUT the key is scoring the first goal and they did … it is hard to chase the game playing against a disciplined team like the Habs. As for Bettman, he could care less about Wpg ……… yes Parros did play part of a season in Montreal.

  2. This is the most inept guy in charge of player safety. I wonder why Maurice didn’t play our younger players more, like Montreal is doing. Thanks for sharing, no doubt this is one of the best site is putting quality content over sports updates and news adding with Best RPG board games 2021. It is more likely to follow you. No doubt these ideas are one of the best ideas that one can start and make his future but you should have passionate about it.

  3. I concur decidedly with your focuses #4, 5, and 11. Bettman proceeds to cowtow to the American proprietors, and it positively seems as though that ceaseless sharp face on this weasel just scrunched up more when Vegas lost. I likewise anticipated that the Habs would free to Vegas, however I’m happy for my serving of crow. With respect to Parros, didn’t he use to play for Montreal once upon a time as their occupant knuckle knife? This is the most awkward person responsible for player security. https://thefootballreports.com/erling-haaland-norwegian-footballer/
    I can’t help thinking about why Maurice didn’t play our more youthful players more, similar to Montreal is doing… a portion of the old vets couldn’t stay aware of the beat of the game Montreal tossed at them. My child, who trained junior, let me know the 1-4 framework is difficult to play against when it is executed appropriately, and it requires a great deal of discipline.
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