Third Quarter Report Card: Defence & Goal

Winnipeg Jets Report Card : Defence and Goal — 

The Winnipeg Jets record at the time of this evaluation was 29 – 26 – 6.  This report was done after the shootout win over Phoenix on Thursday, Feb. 27.   

The Winnipeg  Jets defensive corp went through a bit of a makeover during the third quarter of the season.  It started with now ex-Jets coach Claude Noel and continued with the new Winnipeg Jets Head Coach Paul Maurice.  Dustin Byfuglien has been moved up to the right wing.  He does continue to man his position on the right point on the power-play as well as some four on four opportunities where there is more open ice for the big man to wheel.  The pairings have been Enstrom/Bogosian, Trouba/Stuart and Ellerby/Pardy for the most part.  Rookie Jacob Trouba is playing unbelievable hockey for a rookie and is regularly leading the Winnipeg Jets defenseman in ice-time. 

December 12, 2013-Jets-Avs-06

                  Jacob Trouba is playing like a Calder Trophy candidate                                 photo by Shawn Coates

The defensive play has shown some improvement since the arrival of Paul Maurice.  Toby Enstrom would have received a grade of B or B+ but his offensive numbers aren’t where they should be but he has been pretty good for the most part this season.

My Criteria

Keep in mind the first grade is based strictly what I see on the ice.  The second grade, ROIis based on whether I think the player is earning his salary or is the team getting the appropriate “bang for their buck”

Under “Salary” you will notice this years salary along with the “cap hit” courtesy of capgeek.com/jets 

   DandG3quarters

The Winnipeg  Jets goaltending is still a constant talking point in this city.  Is Ondrej Pavelec a true #1 goaltender?  Should Al Montoya get more starts in goal?  Like I said after the 1st quarter and the 2nd quarter, this team will need their goaltenders to be at the top of their games every night if they have any aspirations of being a play-off team.

Ondrej Pavelec. (Photo by Shawn Coates)

Ondrej Pavelec    Photo by Shawn Coates

I’m not a Pavelec hater and I’m certainly not a card carrying member of his booster club either but as a Winnipeg Jets fan, I just hope I see the good Pavelec more than the inconsistent Pavelec.  Ondrej Pavelec has shown flashes of brilliance but not enough to ever, ever hang the de facto #1 tag on him unchallenged.  At the 3/4 mark of the season, the Jets have 29 wins and 32 losses.  They will need to have very good goaltending in the last quarter of the season if they want a sniff at the post-season.  If at the end of the regular season, you see a grade of B or higher beside both goaltenders it means the Jets probably made the playoffs.  Wouldn’t we all love that? 

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