Welcome back to this week’s edition of Throwback Thursday!
On this day in 2014, the Winnipeg Jets improved to 10-3-1 under new head coach Paul Maurice after a 3-2 shootout win over the Phoenix Coyotes. The game came off the heels of the 2014 Olympics.
The Jets relied on goals from Blake Wheeler and Bryan Little in the first and a second before @olli Jokinen scored the winner in the fourth round of the shootout.
“A vast percentage of the league is going to be pretty rested after a 212-week break,” said Wheeler, who played for the United States in Sochi, but saw limited minutes as the Americans’ 13th forward, following the game. “I think it’s an all-out sprint. There’s no time to be tired.”
For the Jets, it marked another game in the turnaround of their season. Claude Noel had been fired in early January after the Jets went 19-23-5 to start the year, before the aforementioned turn around. Maurice’s Jets finished the new year with an 18-12-5 record, but Winnipeg still came in 7th in the Central and out of the playoffs.
“It was tough at times, but just from the stuff I watched the last two days (around the league), it was a better game than I thought I was going to see,” Maurice said of the game.
The Jets turned the ship around the next year finishing with a 42-26-13 record and a fifth-place spot in the Central division. Winnipeg fell to the Anaheim Ducks in four games that year.
On Twitter: @zjlaing