December 31 2013 04:34PM
The Jets' second and final match against the Sabres comes just 14 days after the first one - a head-shaking 4-2 loss against an historically bad offensive team. Buffalo still only has 66 goals on the season (that's right, 6% of their goals in half a season came in one game against the Jets), but are third to last in December scoring, ahead of Calgary and Montreal. Before the Jets gave up four to the Wild, the Sabres had the lead on that squad as well.
The Jets will play Al Montoya in this one, and Buffalo is countering with their back-up Jonas Enroth. A three game winning streak would be the Jets' second longest of the season, and a loss would be a groaner even if the consequences are low for inter-conference play. It's another pride game for these Jets, and another opportunity to show they can put together 60 minutes without playing down to their opponent.
December 31 2013 03:38PM
The Jets passed game 41 on the schedule, and already it's been an up and down season. Two high-flying wins to open the year gave way to a shameful 'Welcome to the West' October record of 3-7-2 with just a single regulation win in the bunch.
Perhaps the hardest month expected of the season followed, and 3 losses to Chicago in November had the combined score of 15-5. But November also included the team's longest winning streak of four games, and one of their very best performances on the season in a 4-2 win over Detroit. The unexpected record of 7-5-2 kept them in contention for a Wild Card playoff spot, so long as they took advantage of a long Eastern Conference road trip and the easiest month of games any team could ask for.
Instead, decisive losses to Florida, Buffalo, and Edmonton became the low-lights of a month of .500 hockey. Six wins and six losses so far this month put the Jets 6th in the Central, 11th in the West, and 20th in the NHL.
Below, a few Jets Nation contributors sound off on the highs, the lows, what's to be expected, and what can be done.
December 31 2013 01:29AM
Left to right: Lowry, Scheifele, and Petan at practice
Star WHL centre Nic Petan signed his entry level contract yesterday with the Jets, just hours after scoring the winning goal against Slovakia in a come from behind win at the World Junior Championship. Long time readers will know that Petan is a personal favourite of mine, and I consider him a creative puck handler and precision passer with exceptional hockey IQ.
Inside we'll look again at the player and at what the timing of his signing means for the club.
December 31 2013 12:48AM
In a game that has been referred to as one of the most complete efforts from the Jets this year, there was one aspect of their game that remained similar to almost every other game this year. Their reluctance to carry the puck into the zone.
December 30 2013 11:46AM
Fenwick Chart via Extraskater.com
The Jets put together a strong effort Sunday night in Colorado that saw them once again win a special teams battle and out-posses an opponent. It was the kind of game that left me, and many other Jets fans, wondering why road performances like these can’t be a more consistent thing.