Random Thoughts On The Winnipeg Jets: Jan. 9

Odds and Ends about the Winnipeg Jets and the NHL that crossed my mind this past week —

Some random facts and a few thoughts from this past week about the Winnipeg Jets, the Manitoba Moose, and the National Hockey League.

 

1.  The Winnipeg Jets started the week with two impressive wins in the “Sunshine State” and were on their way to a third win in Buffalo until an epic third-period meltdown.  The Jets did finish the week 2-1-0  and now have a record of 19-20-3 overall.      

 

2.  I, like most Winnipeg Jets fans only have one thing on our minds.  How is Patrik Laine?  Yesterday Paul Maurice announced that Patrik Laine has a concussion and there is no timetable for his return. 

3.  I don’t know that I’ve ever seen two periods of textbook hockey followed by a third-period collapse of epic proportions like the Jets 4-3 loss Saturday afternoon in Buffalo.

4.  My initial reaction to Patrik Laine’s hit was that he was got the wind knocked out of his sails.  I didn’t see his head hit the ice and looking at the replay I still couldn’t see where their heads collided but Jake McCabe’s face sure took a hit. After seeing this, I’m surprised McCabe returned to the game.  He looks worse than Patrik Laine probably feels.  

5.  Boy, if Kyle Connor was ready he sure would look with either Bryan Little or Nic Petan.  Next year is going to be very interesting.       

6.  I like the way Drew Stafford took the puck to the net on the PP versus Buffalo on Saturday afternoon.  The PP can’t always live on the perimeter.  Sometimes you need to go into the greasy areas and score an ugly goal.         

7.  The Laine injury really put a damper on the road trip but how much fun was it watching Scheifele, Ehlers, and Laine?   

8.  Pet peeve:  I don’t like how tv announcers and coaches including Paul Maurice use the term adversity.  Getting a goal scored on you isn’t adversity.  It’s called hockey.  Adversity might be overcoming a blown call or losing a couple of players to injury during a game but NOT allowing a goal.  Sorry.            

9.  I don’t want to sound like a broken record but that ridiculous man to man defensive zone coverage Paul Maurice has them playing isn’t “out of the box” thinking, it’s “out of your mind” thinking.  (see #3)     

10.  Last week Jacob Trouba had his best week as a Winnipeg Jets player.    

 

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11.  Team Canada lost a heartbreaker in the gold- medal game versus the United States at the 2016-17 U20 WJC.  The final score was 5-4 in a shootout.

12.  What are your thoughts on shootouts at the U20 WJC?  

How would you like to see overtime games settled in the medal rounds at the WJC?

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13.  For the record, clean hit or not, I didn’t like the Jake McCabe hit on Patrik Laine.  I’m “old school” and I say you protect or stick up for your star players.  I have absolutely no problem with somebody wanting to kick the crap out of ANY player that targets one of our stars.  YOU CANNOT LET OTHER TEAMS THINK IT’S OPEN SEASON ON YOUR STAR PLAYERS.  If you do, you will never win in this league.  Even in this softer, Kumbaya version of the NHL there still is a level of intimidation and if you don’t believe this you are very naive.    

14.  Question for Kevin Cheveldayoff:  Do you have any plans for the trade deadline?  Any chance you start making moves sooner than later? Considering this team can’t win three in a row if their lives depended on it, I see no reason to hang on to vets for a playoff run.  It’s not like their a great help right now anyway.  Pitter patter, let’s get at’er.  They early bird catches the worm.  Pip pip cheerio and all that.  

15.  There are a lot of Jets fans that think Jack Roslovic might be a better prospect than Kyle Connor.  I’m not sure I’m quite there yet BUT Connor did play on a better team and on a very good line.  (Tyler Motte and J.T. Compher)    

16.  I wasn’t a big fan of the Winnipeg Jets drafting Erik Foley in the third-round at the 2015 NHL Entry Draft.  He was a non-factor at the WJC and in my opinion he might top out as a middle of the road AHL player.     

17.  I don’t know why Jets fans give a shit what Toronto fans say and think when it comes to the Calder Trophy race.  They like their guy and we LOVE our guy.  If Laine wins the Calder Trophy I’ll be happy for him but it’s not a life-altering event for me. 

18.  The numbers:

  • Connor Hellebuyck:  GAA – 2.75 … SV% – .910 … 2 shutouts … very good in Tampa and Florida … poor in Buffalo.
  • Michael Hutchinson:  GAA – 3.18 … SV% – .894 … 1 shutout 

19.  This is not sour grapes because Canada lost the gold medal game in a shoot but medal round games should never be decided by a shootout.  It’s ok in the round-robin but not in elimination games.  I hate it now and I hated it when Canada beat the U.S.A. in the infamous Jonathon Toews shootout.  It’s pressure-packed and exciting BUT it’s not fair to heap all that pressure on the goalkeepers. (see #11)  

20.  Special Teams:

  • PP:  18th at 17.2% … up from … 19th at 16.7% … last week.   
  • PK:  26th at 77.1% … up from …  27th at 76.1% … last week. 

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Thanks, Mitch 

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