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Photo Credit: © Kelvin Kuo-USA TODAY Sports

JGD 76: A Tale Of Two Teams With No Plans Past April 11

Today could be the day it’s official.

With a loss of any kind to the Vancouver Canucks tonight, the Winnipeg Jets could be mathematically eliminated from post season play as their “tragic number” sits at one…

Of course it’s felt like the Jets have been eliminated from the playoffs for weeks now, this just means we can likely stop hearing certain broadcasters talk about needing wins to stay alive and focusing on out of town scoreboards like they truly mattered.

As for the game itself, the two teams come into it having split the first two meetings with a pair of 4-1 scores against the other. The Jets have yet to lose in regulation at home against the Canucks since the move to Winnipeg from Atlanta.

Winnipeg Jets (33-35-7 — 5th in Central)
Lines courtesy DailyFaceoff.com

LW C RW
Nikolaj Ehlers
Nikolaj Ehlers
Bryan Little
Bryan Little
Patrik Laine
Patrik Laine
Mathieu Perreault
Mathieu Perreault
Mark Scheifele
Mark Scheifele
Blake Wheeler
Blake Wheeler
Andrew Copp
Andrew Copp
Adam Lowry
Adam Lowry
Joel Armia
Joel Armia
Brandon Tanev
Brandon Tanev
Nicolas Petan
Nicolas Petan
Chris Thorburn
Chris Thorburn

The big question coming out of the morning skate today was the status of Patrik Laine who missed it due to illness. He will be a game-time decision. If he doesn’t go, the line rushes had Copp sliding up to the top line which is fine really. Does it even matter any more? What is life anyway?

Marko Dano also slid into the 4th line this morning so if laine is out, he will likely go in with Tanev and Thorburn. Petan would slide up to the 3rd line with Lowry and Armia which is… I’m going to say an “improvement”?

Also of note, the Jets have scored a power play goal in each of their last six games. That’s not to shabby really. Maybe we should all stop complaining about how Paul Maurice runs the power play.

Or maybe not.

Julian Melchiori
Julian Melchiori
Jacob Trouba
Jacob Trouba
Josh Morrissey
Josh Morrissey
Brian Strait
Brian Strait
Mark Stuart
Mark Stuart
Nelson Nogier
Nelson Nogier

Don’t expect Dustin Byfuglien again as he missed the morning skate and is still out with an injury. For what it’s worth though, this group wasn’t a complete tire fire as expected against the Ducks. Trouba is in for his second game since he returned from his injury so he should be a bit more active in today’s contest.

Michael Hutchinson will start for the Jets and it looks like finally with nothing left to really play for other than pride, Paul Maurice is going to start giving both goalies some equal playing time. Not to mention, Hutch looked very good in a loss to the Ducks with a 34 save performance.


Vancouver Canucks (30-35-9 — 6th in Pacific)
Lines courtesy DailyFaceoff.com

LW C RW
Daniel Sedin
Daniel Sedin
Henrik Sedin
Henrik Sedin
Michael Chaput
Michael Chaput
Sven Baertschi
Sven Baertschi
Bo Horvat
Bo Horvat
Brock Boeser
Brock Boeser
Jack Skille
Jack Skille
Brandon Sutter
Brandon Sutter
Nikolay Goldobin
Nikolay Goldobin
Joe Labate
Joe Labate
Drew Shore
Drew Shore
Reid Boucher
Reid Boucher

The Canucks are coming off a pretty good win in Minnesota yesterday afternoon led by 2015 1st round draft pick Brock Boeser who 24 hours after playing his last game with North Dakota, stepped onto the ice for his first NHL game and promptly scored what ended up being the eventual game winning goal in a 4-2 win over the Wild. The Canucks youth may not get the same publicity as the Jets or Toronto Maple Leafs do – for good reason – but they do have some solid prospects in their system and Boeser could be a heck of a sniper for the Canucks for years to come.

Alexander Edler
Alexander Edler
Troy Stecher
Troy Stecher
Luca Sbisa
Luca Sbisa
Chris Tanev
Chris Tanev
Ben Hutton
Ben Hutton
Nikita Tryamkin
Nikita Tryamkin

It would be nice to mock this lineup of defensemen, but the sad truth is with all the injuries the Jets have faced, this is probably the more NHL worthy group of the two teams.

Ryan Miller is scheduled start in goal for the Canucks. He has an 18-23-6 record while spotting a .915 save percentage.

Predictions:

Game Prediction: Both teams have nothing left to lose anymore and for that reason this could be a quiet, plodding game that no one will remember. But if the whole “playing for pride” and the fact some of these players should be playing for jobs for next season, this could turn into an entertaining affair. Bet on the former, hope for the latter.

Obvious Prediction: Both games have ended 4-1 so obviously this is going to end 4-1 as well, likely for the Jets because why the heck not?

Not S0 Obvious Prediction: Laine does make it into the lineup and puts on a sick performance that leaves Canucks (and maybe some Leafs fans) ill with a couple of goals and an assist.