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Good Show Winnipeg

from Damien Cox of Sportsnet,

Just as the Jets and Ducks were taking to the ice, Ottawa was finishing off a 1-0 victory at home over Montreal to stay alive after, like the Jets, losing the first three games of the series. It was as though one Canadian team was setting the example for another. “See, do it like this.”

Inside the MTS Centre, the crowd at game time was just a shade less noisy, less subdued than spent by the frustrating results 48 hours earlier and the bleak scenario. The lungs seemed willing, but the spirit was flagging, and the emotion of the first playoff game on Winnipeg ice in 19 years earlier in the week was no longer fuel for the fans. Similarly, the players were so battered by the sheer effort it took to get to the post-season they seemed to have nothing more to give.

And so it was, in this mixture of hope and acceptance, of never-say-die fandom and a keen understanding that what was required of this team was too much to ask, that the Jets season ended with a definitive 5-2 loss to Anaheim. These last two games were needed to close the circle on Winnipeg’s lost-and-found NHL story, and within that context, getting swept by the Ducks probably won’t sting quite as much.

But that’s for the locals to decide.

“I do believe they appreciate the effort,” said Jets head coach Paul Maurice. “We’ll try to make things better next year beyond the effort.”

Winnipeg has proven something, the Jets have proven something, and now a promising future beckons. But the Ducks also showed that Winnipeg isn’t close yet, that more building needs to be done by GM Kevin Cheveldayoff and his crew before the Jets can truly be viewed as a contender in the Western Conference.

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Below, the handshakes take place...

Filed in: NHL Teams, Anaheim Ducks, Winnipeg Jets, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Comments

Red Winger's avatar

It was as though one Canadian team was setting the example for another. “See, do it like this.”

Ummm…okay

Posted by Red Winger from Sault Ste Marie, MI on 04/23/15 at 08:31 AM ET

Avatar

So the fans in Winnipeg are so great that they couldn’t sustain it after a couple of games of close losses? Don’t ever feed me that tripe about them being the best fans in the league again.

If their teams play is setting and example for other Canadan teams, Canada will be watching from the outside again pretty soon. A good team doesn’t blow that many opportunities.

Posted by evileye on 04/23/15 at 09:16 AM ET

blammo's avatar

You would think their would be some mutual appreciation between Kesler and the fans based on his playing for the Moose for two years. But Kesler seems to have as much of a hate-on for Canada as you folks do.

Posted by blammo from Vancouver, BC on 04/23/15 at 11:37 AM ET

shazam88's avatar

Definitely great hockey fans in the Peg. Damn shame the team couldn’t hold up better against the Ducks, though.

Posted by shazam88 from SoCal on 04/23/15 at 12:17 PM ET

Red Winger's avatar

Posted by blammo from Vancouver, BC on 04/23/15 at 11:37 AM ET

No one here hates Canada. What is tiresome and tedious is the constant “us against them” mentality that certain Canadians fall into every NHL playoff season.

“look, other Canadian team, this is how you win!”

Please. It’s juvenile.

Posted by Red Winger from Sault Ste Marie, MI on 04/23/15 at 01:10 PM ET

Alan's avatar

No one here hates Canada. What is tiresome and tedious is the constant “us against them” mentality that certain Canadians fall into every NHL playoff season

And it’s for this reason that most people locally actively cheer against Canadian teams during the playoffs. The amount of jingoism that comes from the media north of the 49th parallel rivals that of the politics section of the local papers.

I don’t expect it to change for as long as the current crop of “journalists” are in their positions. But if the type of tripe that we see year in and year out continues to get published, it should be no surprise that people south of tha 49th have a hattred of any Canadian team to touch the cup.

With exception to the Flames, locally. Atlantans still loves the Flames. It’s an absolute shame how that deal went down.

Posted by Alan from Atlanta on 04/23/15 at 01:26 PM ET

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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.

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