Kukla's Korner Hockey
from Mark Spector of Sportsnet,
For an organization that has been accused of being risk-averse over the years, the Winnipeg Jets have become interesting for me.
In goal, former backup Michael Hutchinson’s .937 save percentage leads the entire NHL. He’s wrestled the No. 1 job away from Ondrej Pavelec, and wouldn’t it be interesting if that consistent, everyday No. 1 had been under the Jets’ nose all along?
Up front, they’ve managed to lose their last two games without Evander Kane (lower body), who is out until February.
With some improvement 5-on-5, Winnipeg could be a playoff team for the first time since returning to Manitoba. Will GM Kevin Cheveldayoff have the moves in him at the March 2 trade deadline to get his team over the top? That’s always the question in Winnipeg.
more hockey topics...
Kerry Fraser of TSN answers a few questions regarding a Thomas Vanek goal on Saturday...
Every apparent goal is reviewed by a staff member in the Situation Room in Toronto, in addition to the Video Goal Judge on site and must be confirmed as a 'good goal' prior to the next puck drop. A final decision is rendered and then communicated by the Situation Room personnel to the penalty timekeeper at ice level to issue a 'thumbs up' to the referee at centre ice. This is the signal to the ref that a 'good goal' has been determined and he is allowed to drop the puck and resume play. A 'thumbs up' is not issued until there is concrete evidence that the puck entered the net.
The quick decision to confirm the tying goal credited to Thomas Vanek as opposed to placing the play under formal review however is somewhat confusing to us based on the broadcast replays that were offered. A formal review provides additional time within the process to look at every available angle and confirm beyond even the slightest doubt that a valid goal was scored. Replays shown by various camera angles on the Hockey Night Broadcast, in addition to postgame recap on NHL Game Center Live footage create reasonable suspicion (and even a pretty clear impression) that the puck went post to crossbar and straight down onto and ahead of the goal line without ever entering the net as you suggest...
more and watch the goal below...
Philadelphia head coach Craig Berube must’ve said something to Dustin Byfuglien after the Flyers beat the Jets in OT, prompting the big Jets defenceman to get up in his face.
from Frank Seravalli of the Philadelphia Daily News,
Galvanized by Zepp’s long and winding road, the Flyers put together an equally improbable two-goal rally and stunned the Jets, 4-3, in overtime to deliver him a win.
Zepp, 33, became the oldest goaltender to win his NHL debut since 1926. He compared the experience to climbing Mount Everest.
"I think that’s the beauty of sports," Streit said. "Everywhere you look, there’s always exceptions to the rule. Some guys make it to the NHL at 18 or 19 years old and some guys have to stick with it and work a lot harder. I think it’s important. Guys like him never lose sight of their goal. They always believe in themselves."
Most players in Zepp’s skates, even with the comfortable pay in Europe, would have quit long ago. There were 98 players taken ahead of him in the 1999 NHL Draft. Only five of them are still in the NHL this season: Henrik and Daniel Sedin, Martin Havlat, Jordan Leopold and Chris Kelly.
His story resonated with every player in the Flyers’ locker room - from young to old, from entitled to hungry, from role player to star.
Hollywood-type storylines don’t usually go over very well in NHL dressing rooms. Players today are usually immune to the narrative in their sterile bubble.
more and watch the game highlights below...
"Not a great effort, all the way around. I'm not going to say we were content and [were thinking], 'Let's just get home.'
"I know we've been on the road 13 of the last 15 days — that doesn't hold anything. That bar's pretty high on our team and when you don't get what you reach for, you get pretty upset."
-Bruce Boudreau, head coach of the Anaheim Ducks after a 6-2 loss to Ottawa. More on the game from Lance Pugmire of the LA Times.
Mark Scheifele forgot about keeping his head on a swivel and paid for it last night. Two minutes for interference on Milan Lucic.
A little longer video below, but not as easy to see the hit.
via a Winnipeg Jets release...
The Winnipeg Jets announced they have acquired defenceman Jay Harrison from the Carolina Hurricanes in exchange for Ottawa’s sixth-round pick in the 2015 NHL Draft, previously acquired by Winnipeg at the 2014 NHL Draft.
Harrison, 32, is a veteran of 337 NHL games spread over 10 professional seasons with the Toronto Maple Leafs & Carolina Hurricanes. The Oshawa, ON native entered the NHL with the Maple Leafs during the 2005-06 season. Harrison has accumulated 70 points (21G, 49A) and 337 penalty minutes during his NHL career. He set offensive career-highs with the Hurricanes in 2011-12, recording nine goals and 14 assists for 23 points. Harrison was originally drafted by the Toronto Maple Leafs in the third round, 82nd overall, of the 2001 NHL Entry Draft.
The Winnipeg Jets also announced they have placed defenceman Jacob Trouba on IR retroactive to Dec. 14/14.
RALEIGH, NC – Ron Francis, Executive Vice President and General Manager of the National Hockey League’s Carolina Hurricanes, today announced that the Hurricanes have acquired a sixth-round pick in the 2015 NHL Draft from the Winnipeg Jets in exchange for defenseman Jay Harrison. The pick was previously acquired by Winnipeg from Ottawa.
“We thank Jay for his time with the Hurricanes,” said Francis. “He represented our organization with class and we wish him and his family nothing but the best.”
Paul Maurice announced defenseman Mark Stuart is out until February with a lower-body injury.
This via Paul Wiecek of the Winnipeg Free Press,
Stuart got into a fight Tuesday night late in the third period with Buffalo’s Nicolas Deslauriers. Deslauriers rocked Stuart with two hard punches to the head that knocked Stuart down and he left the ice in obvious discomfort. The game ended with Stuart still serving a fighting major and he never did return.
Here is the fight...
That makes four defensemen out for the Jets, Trouba, Bogosian, Enstrom and now Stuart.
from Gary Lawless of the Winnipeg Free Press,
The Jets are now down three of their top defencemen; Toby Enstrom, Zach Bogosian and Jacob Trouba.
Cheveldayoff has proven effective in the patience game, but this may be the time for him to be more forceful.
The Jets need help on the blue-line and short of finding an out-of-work free agent, it will fall to Cheveldayoff to manufacture a trade. No one should expect a blockbuster, or for Winnipeg to overpay.
Giving more than fair market value would be foolish and this team hasn't shown it's worthy of the GM paying a heavy price to get them over the top.
There is, however, something to be said for rewarding these players for what they've accomplished to date this season.
This group has done all coach Paul Maurice has asked of them. They've adopted a defence-first style and they've played for one another.
Now they need some help. They need a booster shot only Cheveldayoff can deliver.
About Kukla's Korner Hockey
Paul Kukla founded Kukla’s Korner in 2005 and the site has since become the must-read site on the ‘net for all the latest happenings around the NHL.
From breaking news to in-depth stories around the league, KK Hockey is updated with fresh stories all day long and will bring you the latest news as quickly as possible.
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