Toronto Maple Leafs 28-19-6, 62 pts
Winnipeg Jets 24-24-6, 54 pts
7:30 pm MTS Centre
In yet another pivotal game the Jets face the Toronto Maple leafs tonight in the centre of the universe. They Jets need this one bad and the Leafs are coming off of a game last night. If the Jets can find a way to score then they can win this game. Its not like Winnipeg is giving up 5 or 6 goals a game. They have been able to hold their opponents to 2 or 3 a game and that means that you are doing something right at least defensively. Now they need to figure out a way to get more goals. The equation is pretty simple. Scoring more equals winning games. Winning games equals making the playoffs. So before we even think playoffs we need to think scoring goals first.
The good news for the Jets is that the leafs are ahead of them in the standings and playing really well. That usually means that the Jets will come out with a little extra effort. I’m not sure what it is with this team. Against the top teams they seem to excel but put a lesser or even opponent infront of them and they choke. On Sunday the Jets played a very bad montreal team. A team that they should be able to beat 7 or 8 times out of ten. yet the Habs were able to completely outclass the boys from the River City. Winnipeg cannot afford to play down to the levels of their opponents. They need to raise their game to a new level.
The power play has returned to its anemic form that plagued them in the early part of the season. If they could just gett he power play going then the lack of scoring wouldn’t look so bad. The problem in my opinion is puck possession. The Jets try to employ their even strength system of dumping it in even while on the man advantage. I am not a fan of this system when its 5 on 5 let alone when you are a man up. A smart coach can make one adjustment and totally stymie your attack. By having a man stay deep you can get the puck and fire it back out of the zone. The Jets need to retain possession as they cross the blue line. Then they can try and set up their plays. Right now they are making it too easy on the other team.
PLAY WITH FIRE
Last game Blake Wheeler went after Habs super pest PK Subban. Of course Subban had to act like a coward and only fight Wheeler when he wasn’t ready but that fight could and should be used at motivation for this team. Here you have a guy in Wheeler who rarely drops the mits going up against a guy with way more experience. Wheeler is trying to lead by example. The Jets need to realize that and come out with the same fire that Wheeler showed in his fight against Subban. Passion can be the difference between winning and losing. Sometimes wanting it more trumps skill. The Jets need to want it more. They need to play with the same fire that they had back in December. For some reason that fire is out and now they Jets are in trouble. They found it once. They can do it again.
Category: Jets News