Jets Take On Stars in Divisional Game + Winnipeg to Host Future Draft?
The Winnipeg Jets and Dallas Stars will faceoff Tuesday night, and it will be an important one in the Central division, as the teams battle for the divisions top spot.
Connor Hellebuyck is looking to continue his hot stretch, as he has two shutouts in his past five games, and carries a .936 SV% on the season. The team has been performing well in front of him, too, as they are currently on a 5-0-1 stretch over their past six games.
The key to this game will be the offense getting more comfortable. Over the past six games, the Jets have scored 21 goals, which is great, and their stars gave been producing well over the span
Scheifele - 2-2-4
Wheeler - 3-2-5
Dubois - 3-3-6
Connor - 1-4-5
The key part to this, though, is that there have been other pieces producing as well. Josh Morrissey currently has 11 points in 11 games, Adam Lowry and Cole Perfetti each have 7 points in 11 games.
The structure has been settling in a bit more, but there are still signs of Paul Maurice and Dave Lowry's hockey when watching the team. It does take time to adjust, and we are starting to see that change happen.
As I mentioned already, Hellebuyck has been the star of the show. His play has been phenomenal. He currently sits second in the NHL in Goals Saved Above Expected (GSAx) with 10.5. This shows that it is clear that he has been bailing out the team on many occasions, but when it comes to the discussion of being able to trust your goalie to make big saves, it makes it easier to be less responsible on their backcheck. I would like to see Bowness clean this up a bit more, but there have been a few steps in the right direction.
In some other news, Gary Bettman was in Winnipeg and will be in attendance for tonight's game, but took the time for a press conference. On a question about if the league is looking at Winnipeg for future NHL events, he mentioned the possibility of an event like the draft being held at the Sutton Hotel once construction is complete.
The draft is the only thing I can picture happening in Winnipeg. The league is looking at keeping the All-Star events in the south, and specifically Vegas, and it would be hard to get players to want to go to Manitoba in February, when the option of a warmer place is available. A draft, on the other hand, would be an excellent opportunity.
Many were hoping to hear about an international game, potentially in Denmark with Ehlers' ties, but this wasn't mentioned.
I will have a post-game piece up tomorrow, let me know your thoughts on how the season has been going, and what you think about the draft being held in Winnipeg!