Benny and the Jets
Entries with the tag: New York Rangers
Finally, officially, it’s over. The Winnipeg Jets’ playoff chances were slimmer than slim going into last night’s game against the Tampa Bay Lightning, but an overtime loss courtesy of Steven Stamkos’ 56th goal of the year dashed what little hope was left of making the postseason. Infamously weak in the second of back-to-back games and notably bad on the road, the Jets were lucky to keep things close against the Bolts in Tampa following the previous night’s win in Carolina.
A Jets win last night wouldn’t have been enough anyhow – Montreal needed to beat the Washington Capitals for the Jets’ meager chances of the playoffs alive, and they failed to do so in a shootout loss. With just three games left and only four points up on the Toronto Maple Leafs (14th in the Eastern Conference), it’s plausible that the Jets could lose all three games and pick in the top five at this year’s draft. Which, at this point, is what Jets fans should be hoping for.
For 40 minutes, the Winnipeg Jets-Carolina Hurricanes game was a slightly loose and fairly unpredictable game. Then, like they have many times before this year, the Jets came out completely flat in the third period, gave up two goals and lost – in regulation, no less – 4-3. To say this was a must-win game for the Jets is akin to using one any hockey cliché – redundant and/or completely obvious.
With a regulation loss, the Jets remain tied with the Buffalo Sabres with 76 points, and two points back of the Washington Capitals. The Capitals lost against the Chicago Blackhawks, so a win by the Jets would have evened them in the points department. The loss means the Jets’ playoff chances just got much slimmer.
Last night’s 4-3 shootout loss to the Florida Panthers must have been a tough pill to swallow for the Winnipeg Jets, as their Southeast Division rivals managed to get both of a two possible points despite the Jets completely pouring it on from beginning to end. the Jets managed 44 shots on Scott Clemmensen, who stole this game for the Panthers with some help from a three-point game from Kris Versteeg.
In a battle of the backup goalies, The New York Rangers’ Martin Biron was the busier and better of the two, facing 28 shots and turning away all but one en route to a 2-1 New York Rangers victory over the Winnipeg Jets. He did just enough to keep the Rangers in the game, earning the first star of the night in the process. Chris Mason, meanwhile, played fairly well, although he wasn’t exceptionally busy.
Tonight’s Winnipeg Jets game against the New York Rangers will see their toughest opponents to date visit the MTS Centre. It’ll be the first time some real firepower has entered the building, as Marian Gaborik and Brad Richards will undoubtedly press hard in an attempt to bounce back from their loss to the Edmonton Oilers on Saturday night.