Poor Adam Lowry,
with Evander Kane out of the lineup until mid-February, and Dustin Byfuglien
firmly locked in on defence for the time being, the rookie centre will be
without wingers who would have helped him grow as an NHL pro.
unfortunate injury this past weekend, Lowry has centered a line with Matt
Halischuk and Chris Thorburn as his wingers. Now I’m not trying to putdown
Halischuk’s play as of late, as a matter of fact, I think he was thriving on a
line with Lowry and Kane. In his last eight games, Halischuk has had two
points, 18 shots and has played between 12 and 17 minutes.
Thorburn on the
other hand, has never struck me as a third line player in the NHL and seemed
obviously out of place in his first game with Lowry and Halischuk Monday night
against the Minnesota Wild. Thorburn played just over 11 minutes with his new
line and failed to register a point or even a shot in 18 shifts. Needless to
say, the 31-year-old will need some time to build some chemistry with the rookie
centre and Halischuk. Time that the Jets do not have much of.
As mentioned in a
story by Dale Lamontagne, the Jets have options in the system in Carl
Klingberg and Eric O’Dell and missed out on acquiring Magnus Paajarvi (a former
first round draft selection) off waivers from the St. Louis Blues.
But one player
that was not mentioned was none other than Dany Heatley, a former 50-goal scorer
and Olympic gold medalist, who was also placed on waivers Monday, by the
Heatley who is
not a stranger to the Winnipeg Jets/ Atlanta Thrashers franchise, has struggled
to find the offensive game that once made him an NHL superstar in the
mid-2000s, but still has what I believe could have been enough of a spark for a
third line on a team that struggles to score more than three goals on most
nights. During his time with the Thrashers, Heatley scored 80 goals and 101
assists as an up-and-coming superstar.
It certainly would have
been interesting to see Heatley return to the franchise that drafted him second
overall in 2000. The 33-year-old has been an offensive catalyst earlier in his
NHL career but has been a different player since leaving the Ottawa Senators in
2009. In 869 career NHL games, the German-born winger has netted 372 goals and
419 assists, playing for the Thrashers, Senators, San Jose Sharks, Wild and
In his past three
seasons Heatley has just 49 points and has since been reassigned to Anaheim’s
affiliate, the Norfolk Admirals. Sure these numbers are low, but they are
better than anything Anthony Peluso, TJ Galiardi or Thorburn can bring for the
next two months.
I’m not saying the Jets made a mistake failing
to claim Dany Heatley off waivers; I just believe he may be a better option on
the third line for the Jets over the next two months. Even if he didn’t pan out
for the Jets, they could have just scratched him and played with the forwards
the have now. Perhaps the team has options or a trade in place that no one has
mentioned. I’m just saying Heatley may have been worth the gamble.