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JNGD.29 Flight Plan: Looking To Tame Some Big Cats

After a rough start to this week’s three game road trip, the Jets fly into Florida looking to right some wrongs and put together a much better effort against a Florida Panthers team that has struggled at the best of times this season and is now without their all-star goaltender for the next few weeks.

Jets Regular Season Game #29

Winnipeg Jets (17-7-4)
@
Florida Panthers (10-13-4)

December 7, 2017 – Puck drop: 6:30 PM CST
BB&T Center – Sunrise, FL
TV: TSN3 – Radio: TSN 1290

Recently for the Jets…

The Jets will be glad to get back into game action tonight and try to wipe out the memory of what happened to them on Tuesday night in Detroit. Winnipeg came out flat against a Red Wings team that was themselves desperate to try and right their own ship after a 10-1 loss in Montreal. One can make the argument that while the Wings played well enough and Detroit goalie Jimmy Howard deserves credit for a strong game in goal, the Jets looked sloppy with poorly executed passing, multiple turnovers and undisciplined play. The Jets suddenly have gone 0-2-1 in their last three on the road and will need a much better effort than they’ve had in any of those three previous games. The lines will likely stay the same as they were in Detroit with the only switch taking place in goal as Eric Comrie should get the start.

Recently for the Panthers…

Florida has lost their last three including a 5-4 shootout loss to the Islanders on Monday night. The Florida Panthers have had a tough start to the season with inconsistent play, but that season took a dramatic turn for the worse on Monday when they lost Roberto Luongo to a lower body injury. Speculation is it could be multiple weeks that the Cats are without their all-star goalie and the team now looks to backup James Reimer to carry the load which is a bit of a scary prospect when you consider the Panthers are going from a .928 save percentage with Luongo to Reimer’s .892 mark. The Panthers have also had all kinds of issues scoring this season and rank 27th in the league in goals scored. That will happen when you let five of your top eight scorers from last season (Jonathan Marchessault, Reilly Smith, Jaromir Jagr, Jussi Jokinen, and Jason Demers) leave your club.

Recently between both teams…

This is the first of two meetings between the two former division rivals as they will meet again in late February back in Winnipeg. The Jets won both of last year’s games, 4-1 in Florida and then a 4-3 shootout win in Winnipeg that saw the Jets give up three power play goals to the Panthers. In both of those games, Connor Hellebuyck was the winning goalie.

Winnipeg Jets Lines

Lines courtesy of DailyFaceoff.com

LW C RW
Kyle Connor
KYLE CONNOR #81
Mark Scheifele
MARK SCHEIFELE #55
Blake Wheeler
BLAKE WHEELER #26
Nikolaj Ehlers
NIKOLAJ EHLERS #27
Bryan Little
BRYAN LITTLE #18
Patrik Laine
PATRIK LAINE #29
Andrew Copp
ANDREW COPP #9
Adam Lowry
ADAM LOWRY #17
Brandon Tanev
BRANDON TANEV #13
Mathieu Perreault
MATHIEU PERREAULT #85
Matt Hendricks
MATT HENDRICKS #15
Joel Armia
JOEL ARMIA #40
DEFENSIVE PAIRINGS
Josh Morrissey
JOSH MORRISSEY #44
Jacob Trouba
JACOB TROUBA #8
Ben Chiarot
BEN CHIAROT #7
Dustin Byfuglien
DUSTIN BYFUGLIEN #33
Dmitry Kulikov
DMITRY KULIKOV #5
Tyler Myers
TYLER MYERS #57

Florida Panthers Lines

LW C RW
Jonathan Huberdeau
JONATHAN HUBERDEAU #11
Aleksander Barkov
ALEKSANDER BARKOV #16
Nick Bjugstad
NICK BJUGSTAD #27
Jamie McGinn
JAMIE MCGINN #88
Vincent Trocheck
VINCENT TROCHECK #21
Denis Malgin
DENIS MALGIN #62
Connor Brickley
CONNOR BRICKLEY #23
Jared McCann
JARED MCCANN #90
Radim Vrbata
RADIM VRBATA #71
Micheal Haley
MICHEAL HALEY #18
Derek MacKenzie
DEREK MACKENZIE #17
Colton Sceviour
COLTON SCEVIOUR #7
DEFENSIVE PAIRINGS
Keith Yandle
KEITH YANDLE #3
Aaron Ekblad
AARON EKBLAD #5
Michael Matheson
MICHAEL MATHESON #19
Mark Pysyk
MARK PYSYK #13
Ian McCoshen
IAN MCCOSHEN #12
Alex Petrovic
ALEX PETROVIC #6
GOALIES
James Reimer
JAMES REIMER #34
Harri Sateri
HARRI SATERI #29

Gameday Prediction

Stop me if you’ve heard this before… The Jets need to get off to a good start in this game. I know it sounds a bit broken record-ish, but in the last three road games the Jets haven’t been sharp to start games and tonight they play another team with a wounded psyche and looking to prove a point – the Panthers will be without Luongo for the next while and this next stretch of games could be their entire season. Jets have no choice but to come out strong. Jets win tonight 5-3.


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  • The Jet will blow the Panthers away if they come out skating, hitting and playing smart like they did against Ottawa. This team should never lose to middle of the road teams like the Panthers. Beating teams like this is the difference between being considered an elite team or a pretender that is good but has not yet developed the killer instinct that top teams have.