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What will happen 1st for the Winnipeg Jets this off-season: Jets Nation poll question follow-up

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Photo credit:© James Carey Lauder-USA TODAY Sports
Connor Baldwin
1 month ago
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The Winnipeg Jets off-season in 2024 is going to be an interesting one, we know that much for sure. Yesterday, I took to Twitter / X and Instragram to ask Jets Nation what will happen 1st for the Winnipeg Jets this off-season. I wanted to get some responses from Jets fans to see what needs to be the 1st priority for this off-season. The options I gave people were: hire a new head coach, sign a key UFA, trade a roster player and other roster move. The people have spoken, and with 86% of the votes on Twitter / X and 73% of the votes on Instagram, hiring a new head coach should be move number 1 for the Winnipeg Jets this off-season. After seeing the results, I just wanted to share my own brief thoughts on the options that I presented on social media for Jets Nation.
Hire a new head coach
This option was understandably the number 1 choice by most people. I kind of already knew that this would likely be the one people voted on the most, but I thought there would be a 2nd option that was a little bit closer. With Rick Bowness’ departure, the Jets are already on the head coach search for next season. The rest of the coaching staff appears to be staying unless something changes, so the Jets are focused on bringing in 1 coach that will run the team next season and hopefully beyond. There have been so many coaching changes this season, meaning that there are many available options for the Jets. A few of the names which have already been rumoured that the Jets would like to contact include Craig Berube, Scott Arniel, Todd Nelson, Dean Evason and Sheldon Keefe. There’s likely about 5 or so other valid options that the Jets could pick from too, so it’ll be a very interesting next couple of weeks to see who the Jets decide to pick as their new head coach.
Sign a key UFA
The Jets have plenty of unrestricted free agents this season, most of which were important pieces to their team in 2023-24. A lot of questions will be asked about which UFAs the team would like to keep and which ones they will let go into free agent. If I had to guess which UFA would be signed 1st for the Jets, it would probably be Josh Morrissey’s trusty defence partner, Dylan DeMelo. The Jets still have a month and a half to make some decisions before free agency begins, but look for them to try to get a deal or two done before free agency day on July 1st.
Trade a roster player
Trade talk always begin to happen after a team has officially entered off-season mode. The players that are usually front and centre are either the restricted free agents or players with 1 year left on their current contract. The unrestricted free agents are usually the 1st players that get attention, but after that the Jets will have to decide if there’s any player(s) that they want to deal before next season begins. One player that’s rumoured to be on the trade block is Nikolaj Ehlers. The forward might have outpriced himself from the Jets, and with 1 year left on his deal he might get moved prior to the draft to maximize his return. Mock trades in the off-season are always an interesting topic of discussion, and the Jets will be included in some of them for sure.
Other roster move
The final option I left as “other” roster move, which would basically mean anything that isn’t signing or trading a current roster player. This might include moves such as signing one of their prospects to their entry level deals, or any other moves or changes within the organization. It’s likely going to be an unpredictable off-season for the Jets, so there may just be 1 or 2 of these “other” moves that happen which will be necessary to get done before the 2024-25 season begins.
Overall, as mentioned, I pretty much knew that hiring a new head coach would be the most likely #1 option for what the Jets will do 1st in the off-season. Once the Jets have a new bench boss, the new coach in charge can work with the GM and other management to decide what needs to be done next. There will be plenty of more off-season articles and news coming out when those decisions are made, so stay tuned to Jets Nation for those and much more off-season content!

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