Random Thoughts On The Winnipeg Jets: May 16

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. Jets:  The season is over for the Winnipeg Jets but Pierre-Luc Dubois and Adam Lowry with be reprersenting Team Canada at the 2022 Men’s World Hockey Championships.  Nate Schmidt will be joining Team USA and Nikolaj Ehlers will play for Team Denmark.  I love the IIHF WHC and having our Winnipeg Jets player involved just makes it a little more interesting.      

2. Jets:  The 2022 NHL Draft Lottery was held this past week but it was pretty uneventful and as expected the Winnipeg Jets will pick at #14.  There should be a pretty good player available at 14 so I along with other Jets fans will be watching the experts and their mock drafts for the next two months. 

I think its time Jets head amateur scout, Mark Hillier started paying a little more attention to the WHL and a little less time in the USHL.  This team needs big, strong farm boys with sack and fewer figure skaters that don’t know where the corners are.  I’m tired of watching the Jets getting physically overmatched and pushed around.     

3. Jets:  The Trotz watch is officially on and Winnipeg Jets fans are hoping the Manitoba native picks the Jets as his next challenge.  Most Jets fans think he is the missing piece this team needs and I want to agree but I’m not quite sure this team, as it is constructed can execute a Barry Trotz game plan.  A major buy-in will be needed from a lot of players that have been less than stellar on the defensive side of the game.    

UPDATE:

4. NHL:  My weekly analysis (bitching) about NHL officiating.  

May 10 – Kings at Oilers

Once again there was a suspendable offence that went uncalled when Edmonton’s Darnell Nurse headbutted LA’s Philip Danault right in the face.  If you watch the replay it should have been obvious to everybody on the ice wearing stripes.

There is absolutely no way you could convince me that one of referees Gord Dwyer and Francois StLaurent or linesmen Scott Cherrey and Libor Suchanek did not see the infraction.  If one of those 4 sets of eyes don’t have the balls to make that call then WHAT THE HELL ARE THEY DOING ON THE ICE?

5. Moose:  The Manitoba Moose lost their opening round series against Milwaukee in 5 games despite being the best team for most of the series.  The Manitoba Moose play hockey the way Winnipeg Jets fans wish their team would play hockey, they’re scappy, go to the net, shoot everything on the net and work hard.  The Moose play like a bunch of grinders with a nice mix of skill.  This team works hard, is well coached, and are fun to watch.  A tip of the hat to Mark Morrison and his coaching staff.  

6. ICE:  The Winnipeg ICE made short work of the Prince Albert Raiders, eliminating them in 5 games and also took care of Moose Jaw in 5 games. 

Game

Visitor

 

Home

Date

Time

1

Moose Jaw   1

@

Winnipeg   6

Friday, May 6

7:00

2

Moose Jaw  0

@

Winnipeg   7

Saturday, May 7

7:00

3

Winnipeg   2

@

Moose Jaw   3

Tuesday, May 10

7:00

4

Winnipeg   5

@

Moose Jaw   3

Wednesday, May 11

7:00

5 *

Moose Jaw   3

@

Winnipeg   6

Friday, May 13

7:00

6 *

Winnipeg

@

Moose Jaw

Sunday, May 15

4:00

7 *

Moose Jaw

@

Winnipeg

Tuesday, May 17

7:00

* If necessary

NOW, the ICE move on to the much anticipated Eastern Final series versus the Edmonton Oil Kings.  This should be an epic 7-game series with very little to choice between theese two excellent teams.

WHL Eastern Conference Championship Schedule

 All times are local

Game

Visitor

 

Home

Date

Time

1

Edmonton

@

Winnipeg

Friday, May 20

7:00

2

Edmonton

@

Winnipeg

Saturday, May 21

7:00

3

Winnipeg

@

Edmonton

Monday, May 23

7:00

4

Winnipeg

@

Edmonton

Wednesday, May 25

7:00

5 *

Winnipeg

@

Edmonton

Friday, May 27

7:00

6 *

Edmonton

@

Winnipeg

Sunday, May 29

5:00

7 *

Edmonton

@

Winnipeg

Tuesday, May 31

7:00

 

* If necessary

7. Moose: Kudos to TSN and TNSE for broadcasting the Manitoba Moose games this past week.  This was a nice unexpected bonus.  

8. Jets:  I would love to see how Leon Gawanke would look with the big club.  There is so much high-end talent on the Moose blueline and nowhere for them to go.  I don’t count Dylan Samberg anymore because in my mind he is already a Winnipeg Jet.  Ville Heinola, Johnathan Kovacevic, and Declan Chisholm all average over half a point per game and would be regulars on quite a few NHL rosters.

Embed from Getty Images

Gawanke had 10 goals and 26 helpers in 65 games with the Moose this past season, he is a better than average puck-mover with a good shot capable of running a powerplay.  I’m not sure I put a lot of stock into heights and weights but he is listed as 6’1″ and 198 lbs which is on the smaller side by NHL standards but not bad.  Gawanke is one of the Moose players that really intriques me and he is a right-handed shot to boot. 

9. NHL:  As much as it gives me great pleasure watching the Toronto Maple Leafs lose I must admit I thought they were the better team for most of the seven-game series and probably deserved a better fate.       

10. IIHFThe letters have been passed out for this years Team Canada and two Winnipeg Jets will be wearing an “A”.

C:  Thomas Chabot … Senators
A:  Josh Anderson … Canadiens
A:  Pierre-Luc Dubois … Jets
A:  Adam Lowry … Jets
A:  Damon Severson … Devils

11. NHL:  I beg you, enough of Leah Hextall, please, please.  Hextall definitely knows the game but the neighbourhood dogs start howling when they hear her high-pitched voice.   

12. Jets:  My weekly question for Kevin Cheveldayoff or Mark Chipman.

Just for shits and giggles could you rank you new head coach wish list?  If it doesn’t look something like this you are missing the boat.

  1. Barry Trotz
  2. Barry Trotz
  3. Barry Trotz
  4. Barry Trotz
  5. Barry Trotz

I’m sure you get the picture.

13. Jets:  Now that the season is over, what would you like to see TNSE do with the Winnipeg Jets?

Your wishes for this off-season for the Winnipeg Jets?

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GM Kevin Cheveldayoff has been extended for THREE more seasons as the Winnipeg Jets General Manager so voting for him to be replaced is still on the table but it’s not happening.

14. NHL:  Important Dates:  

July 7:  First round of the 2022 NHL Entry Draft at the Bell Centre in Montreal.

July 8:  The second through seventh rounds.

July 13:  The signing period for RFA and UFA free agents will begin at 11 am MB time.

15. Moose:  I really like Jeff Mallott and I’d love to see him on a line with David Gustafsson and Morgan Barron next season with the Jets.  I would prefer to see a fourth line made up of prospects with a future with the big club rather than a revolving door of 4th-line plugs on 0ne-year contracts.  Signing guys like Nate Thompson, Trevor Lewis, Gabrielle Bourque, Mark Letestu, and Matt Hendricks is not my idea of “draft and developement”.   

*

Comments

  1. Trevor Lewis was fine. I like Mikey’s esseymont too. But for sure Mallot and Barron.
    Trotz is the man we need.

    • Mitch Kasprick says

      Thanks for dropping by …. Mike E. is a good player … not sure if he is an NHL player but maybe he gets the odd injury call-up … the problem is there are lots of guys we like but no room on the roster.

      • I totally agree with your comment re the Jets are too soft. Too many tiny defense men. Get bigger get tougher.

        • Mitch Kasprick says

          I know size doesn’t always mean tougher as plenty of smaller players can play tough but overall we lose far too many board battles and netfront battles in both ends … the game is still fast and skilled but it is reverting back to tougher hockey and especially in the playoffs.

        • I’ll second that. It’s fine to have a defenceman or two who take hits to make plays but that only gets you so far. A properly balanced team also needs defencemen who deliver hits to force turnovers, especially in the playoffs.

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