March 08 2012 11:41PM
The Vancouver Canucks were a tough opponent for the Winnipeg Jets, and they didn't escape the West Coast alive, blowing a third period lead despite a strong performance from Ondrej Pavelec and a beauty goal by Blake Wheeler to put the team ahead.
March 08 2012 08:57AM
The Winnipeg Jets went 5-2-1 in their latest home stand, an eight-game run that helped the team into the final post-season berth in the Eastern Conference. The bad news is that the home stand is now over, and the Jets are forced to head out on the road – starting with a game in Vancouver against the Canucks tonight. Is the shift from home games to road games going to cost the Jets that playoff spot?
The Toronto Maple Leafs on the other hand have a fairly solid road record, even including last night’s distressing defeat. Is that enough for them to pull out of their recent nosedive?
March 07 2012 01:58PM
With 15 games left on the regular-season schedule, the Jets are sitting above the playoff line. Sure, their position changes day-to-day, but as precarious as their two point lead on ninth-place Washington is, the fact they are still in the hunt at this stage of the game has to be considered a minor victory of sorts.
After an off-season of minimal additions or subtractions, the Jets closely resembled the Atlanta Thrashers team from a year ago that crashed and burned down the stretch en route to another missed post-season. Jets fans young and old held out hope that they'd somehow take their game to another level this season, but getting over that hump was contingent on a number of "what ifs", none bigger than the need for its young core of stars-in-the-making to take the next step.
And that, to the joy of Jets fans, has largely materialized as a young group of players has fuelled the Jets success through 67 games.
March 07 2012 09:33AM
Former Jets defenseman Sergei Bautin is a subject of profound respect among Dynamo Moscow fans. No wonder – he was a part of arguably the best teams Russian hockey has ever put together. In the early 1990s Dynamo Moscow was a pretty much a dream team. Bautin joined the blue-and-white, played with them for 2 seasons and won 2 championship titles.
March 06 2012 09:16AM
With his 15th goal on the season last night, Blake Wheeler extended his career point total to 54 - good enough to tie him for 33rd in league scoring.
Maybe it's not that significant that Wheeler is 33rd in the league, but the fact that he is tied with the likes of Corey Perry (33 goals, 21 assists) and Henrik Zetterberg (15 goals, 39 assists) puts him into some very highly esteemed company (not to mention Wheeler's 39 assists is good enough for 12th place tie with Martin St. Louis, Ray Whitney, Eric Staal, and Zetterberg)
Even if he stumbles in an interview with TSN's Sara Orlesky after the game, Wheeler has shown on-ice maturity that has started to take hold in the Jets room.