Archive for December, 2011

What’s faster, a Jet or a Panther?

Hot off their second straight win last night, beating the Los Angeles Kings in overtime, the Winnipeg Jets have never been closer to having a top-three spot in the Eastern Conference, despite currently being in seventh spot.

The Jets are currently looking up at the New Jersey Devils (41 pts), Pittsburgh Penguins (46 pts), Philadelphia Flyers (48 pts), and Florida Panthers (45 pts).  But the only team Winnipeg needs to catch up to secure a playoff spot is the Panthers, who lead the Jets by only four points.

While both the Penguins and Flyers lead the Panthers in points, the Panthers sit pretty in third place simply for being at the top of the Southeast Division.  Just besting the Panthers in points, an attainable goal, would guarantee a top-three spot in the Eastern Conference for the Winnipeg team.

While the Jets got off to a rocky start under brand new management and coaching staff, the squad seems to only be improving with every passing game, and young talents like Evander Kane, Alex Burmistrov and Ondrej Pavelec are laying a solid foundation for future seasons.

In the month of December, the Winnipeg Jets have won nine of 13 games played, and can improve that to 10 with a victory over the Toronto Maple Leafs on New Year’s Eve.  In a strange twist of fate that saw the Jets win and Leafs lose in overtime last night, the two teams’ records have drawn completely even at 18-14-5 for both, setting the stage for a thrilling classic to close out 2011.

The two teams have only met once so far this season, back on October 19, and the Jets gave up a 3-1 lead to fall 4-3 in a shootout in the Air Canada Centre in Toronto.  This time, the Leafs will be in the MTS Centre, facing a much more comfortable and improved Winnipeg squad. Toronto will be looking to leapfrog the Jets into a more secure playoff spot, and the Jets will be feverishly trying to hang on to a playoff spot of their own now that they finally have it.

Puck drops at 6:00 p.m. CT on CBC’s Hockey Night in Canada.  Go, Jets, go!

Christmas in May

I think for a lot of Winnipeggers, Christmas has already come and gone and it was back in May, 2011.

It’s actually crazy for me to think of how invested I am in our shiny new NHL team, the Winnipeg Jets, when only about seven months ago, having the NHL back in our city still seemed like a distant dream.  After True North’s acquisition of the Atlanta Thrashers was announced, the emergence of details like our team name, our logo, and our jersey design, seems like it took ages to surface.  But looking back now, with 35 games under our belt, it somehow seems like everything came out of nowhere.

I’m still not used to the fact that I’ll be watching hundreds more Jets game well into the future, and I also don’t think I appreciate having our team back as much as I eventually will, just because it still doesn’t seem real to me.

I can’t remember how old I was when I started playing hockey, but I’ve always loved it.  I think I probably would have loved the sport no matter what, but there’s no question that my mom definitely helped push me in that direction.

My mom was a huge Winnipeg Jets fan at the time that the team left our city, and a picture of her, holding a sign she made, at a “Save the Jets” rally, was widely used in newspapers and books in 1995/96 when the team left.

My mom is on the left, holding her sign.

Yesterday, my mom got the new Winnipeg Jets “Back in the Bigs” book for her birthday.  She flipped it open, and guess what was staring back at her? Yep, her photo, featured once again.

So for anyone who has wondered in the last couple months why I am so crazy about the Winnipeg Jets, it’s simply not my fault; I was born with Jets in my blood.

Just kind of wanted to dump off some Jets media that I’ve created that hasn’t been pushed and publicized by me yet, including a photo of Ondrej Pavelec that I doctored up for his 1-0 victory over the Phoenix Coyotes.

And also the latest video that I made one night before an installment of Hockey Night in Canada featuring the Jets. CLICK HERE TO WATCH

With all of that out of the way, I hope everyone has a great holiday, Jets fans and Jets haters alike.

JT