Random Thoughts On Wpg vs Vegas Games 1-4

Mitch Kasprick is now the “Westdale Curmudgeon” 

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 or is it the 8Ps?  You’ve been warned.

You can listen to a more in-depth audio version here >>> Audio Version Podcast is now live

May 8:  NHL Draft Lottery (7 p.m. ET)

June 3:  Tentative start of Stanley Cup Final

June 4-10:  NHL Scouting Combine

June 26:  2023 NHL Awards

June 28:  Round 1 of the 2023 NHL Draft (7 p.m. ET)

June 29:  Rounds 2-7 of the 2023 NHL Draft (11 a.m. ET)

1. Jets:  After a great start to the series the Winnipeg Jets now face elimination Thursday night in Las Vegas.  Already without Nikolaj Ehlers, the Jets also lost Josh Morrissey and Mark Scheifele to injury.  Josh is out for the rest of the series and Scheif needs to be further evaluated but his injury didn’t look good.  

I still maintain that the Jets had a chance to win this series but with them now missing three of their best players the chances are slim and none and slim just left town. 

GM 1:   Tuesday, April 18, 8:30 p.m. T-Mobile Arena … Won 5-1
GM 2: 
 Thursday, April 20, 9:00 p.m. T-Mobile Arena … Lost 5-2 
GM 3: 
 Saturday, April 22, 3:00 p.m. Canada Life Centre … Lost 5-4 2OT
GM 4: 
 Monday, April 24, 8:30 p.m. Canada Life Centre …  Lost 4-2
GM 5: 
 Thursday, April 27, 9:00 p.m. T-Mobile Arena
GM 6:   
Saturday, April 29, TBD Canada Life Centre* 
GM 7:   
Monday, May 1, TBD T-Mobile Arena*
*If Necessary
TBD – To Be Determined

 2. Jets:  You can say whatever you want about Saku Maenalanen’s and Kevin Stenlund’s lack of scoring but the way they compete and use their size is very conducive to playoff hockey and their “give a shit” level is high.

3. Jets:  Like most fans, I thought it looked like Josh Morrissey injured his knee in a collision with Zach Whitecloud BUT I’m so sure because Logan Stanley took the warmup as there was apparently a question mark about a defenceman (don’t know who) so it may be from the last game, nobody really knows.

4. NHL:  I think a lot of hockey fans would like to see the salary cap be included in the NHL playoffs and not so much because of the player the miraculously get healthy for the playoffs BUT because of the players these teams acquire at the trade deadline with the extra cap space because of a player on LTIR.  It’s just another CBA loophole NHL GMs are exploiting.

5. Jets:  Game 3 was a tough loss to swallow but the fact that the Jets went 4 plus periods without their best defenceman and the other five guys were forced to play inflated minutes, it was a minor miracle we even got to overtime.

Game 3 ice TOI for Winnipeg Jets defencemen.

  • Neal Pionk: 41:08
  • Dylan DeMelo: 36:31
  • Brendan Dillon: 30:30
  • Nate Schmidt: 28:42
  • Dylan Samberg: 22:00

6. Jets:  Blake Wheeler has 2 goals and 3 assists in the series.  Not bad for a guy many fans wanted to run out of town.

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7. Jets:  I think Connor Hellebuyck’s play in this series so far has been okay BUT it hasn’t been great and now the Jets are in the position (down 3-1) of needing GREAT.

8. ICE:  The Winnipeg ICE won their Eastern Conference Semi-Final series vs the Moose Jaw Warriors 4-2 and now awaits the winner of Red Deer and Saskatoon.  The Blades host the Rebels in Game Seven Tuesday night.

Game 1    7:05 CT: Friday, April 14 ICE Cave inside Wayne Fleming Arena … Won 5-3
Game 2   6:05 CT: Saturday, April 15 ICE Cave inside Wayne Fleming Arena … Lost 5-3
Game 3   8:00 CT: Tuesday, April 18 Moose Jaw Events Centre … Lost 8-4
Game 4   8:00 CT: Wednesday, April 19 Moose Jaw Events Centre … Won 3-2 OT
Game 5 7:30 CT: Saturday, April 22 ICE Cave inside Wayne Fleming Arena … Won 5-2
Game 6 8:00 CT: Monday, April 24 Moose Jaw Events Centre … Won 8-2
Game 7* 7:05 CT: Wednesday, April 26 ICE Cave inside Wayne Fleming Arena
* if necessary

9. Jets:  Kyle Connor has scored and has points in this series but he has been a non-factor with his persistence to play on the perimeter that is easily defended

10. Jets:  Was the Game 3 winning goal by Vegas in double OT a bad turnover by Dylan Samberg or an unfortunate bounce?

11. Jets:  Although Vegas was my preferred opponent for the first round, I haven’t forgotten that they were the best team in the Western Conference but it seems like a lot of Jets fans have and think we should have a cakewalk because we have the better goalie.  Unfortunately, hockey doesn’t work like that.

12. Jets:  Poll question

Who is your pick in the Jets vs Knights series?

View Results

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13. Jets:  My weekly question for Rick Bowness, Kevin Cheveldayoff, or Mark Chipman.

This question is for Rick Bowness:  Why all the cloak-and-dagger BS with Nik Ehlers’ injury status?  If he’s out, just say so.

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

  • PP: 3rd at 41.70% up from 24th at 19.10% in the regular season
  • PK: 4th at 85.70% up from 6th at 82.80% in the regular season
  • FO: 9th at 50.00% up from 21st at 48.90% in the regular season

      Jets:  Goaltending:

  • Conner Hellebuyck:  1-3 … 3.21 GAA … .895 SV%   
  • David Rittich:

15. Jets:  The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly this past week.

    • Good:  PLD in Game 1 … Adam Lowry and Dylan DeMelo are playing their best hockey as Winnipeg Jets.
    • Bad:  The Jets 4 on 3 powerplay in the first period of Game 2 and MIA Kyle Connor.
    • Ugly:  The 75-stitch cut close to Morgan Barron’s right eye and the injuries to 44 and 55.

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You can listen to a more in-depth audio version here >>> Audio Version Podcast is now live



  1. Hi Mitch…First of all, I am proud of the way our Jets are competing. I realize some of our guys are underperforming, but I have been pleasantly surprised by a few guys especially Pionk. This was a guy I constantly dissed throughout the year, but his playoff performance has me eating crow. Lowrey has surpassed my expectations and I am on the bandwagon to give him the “C”…this guy leads by example. Here’s hoping we can pull off the rare 3 game run.

    • Mitch Kasprick says

      Hey Les … thanks for visiting … Josh probably gets the “C”
      One game at a time right? lol
      For more in-depth thoughts check out the podcast … language warning lol

  2. Just a minor note for your 3rd thought, Mitch: I attended Game 3 and noticed that all the scratches (AJF, your boy Kuhlman, Stanley and Capobianco) participated in the warm-up.

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