Gotta love games that start at 6 local time during the week...
That's the case tonight as the local Winnipeg Jets take on the Philadelphia Flyers in a game that will see me, among others, busting my hump to get to the game on time to see the Jets give the Flyers the thumping they deserve.
The Jets enter this third game of an 8 game home stand with wins in 3 straight games, including their most recent two in the friendly confines of the MTS Centre as they have done away with the Minnesota Wild, Boston Bruins and most recently the Colorado Avalanche. All 3 games saw something that Jets fans cannot be overly accustomed to at this point of the season: offense.
The recent restructuring of the line combinations has seen a surge in productivity from the Jets forwards as new and old combinations have resulted in big scoring which has resulted in big wins.
As noted earlier, the most recent game for the Jets came against the Avs, who the Jets beat up twice this year to the tune of 4-1 in Denver and 5-1 here in Winnipeg. The Jets would look to continue those winning ways on home ice tonight against their old foe Philadelphia.
Speaking of the Flyers, their most recent action came against the Pittsburgh Penguins on Saturday in a game they lost by a 6-4 margin where neither of their goaltenders did much to earn a win, and therefore made it all but impossible for me to predict who would be in net tonight.
But I tried anyway. Seeing as I think Coach Laviolette will try to protoect ILLLLLLLLLLLLLLYYYYYYAAAAAAAAAAAAA and his fragile psyche from being damaged, I expect Bobrovsky to tend the pipes.
So that's that. Once again I remind any of you going to the game it's starts at a stupidly early time. Plan accordingly.
Keys to the Game, Lineups and player Numbers coming up after THE JUMP
Keys to the Game:
- Please sir, I'd like some more...of what I saw on Sunday! The offensive woes of the Jets seem to be a distant memory as the Jets have put up 4 goals or more in 3 straight wins. I don't think it's a coincidence that the new second line is producing in a good way. In 4 games together they've put up a stat line of 6 goals and 8 assists for 14 points, while mustering 27 shots on goal and posting a +12 rating. Not too shabby for a couple of kids and a guy who makes 700k.
- The goaltending of Ondrej Pavelec continues to be remarkable as he constantly finds the need to remind me that's he's the best player on the roster on any given night...except for that game against Pittsburgh. that sucked.
- Andrew Ladd scored a powerplay goal last game. I know...I'm scared too. But the powerplay going 2 for 5 was a nice reminder that it wasn't always as futile as it has been of late. 5 games in a row without a PP goal makes you forget that though.
- How bout that Blake Wheeler? He has 1 goal and 9 assists in his last 5 games. Outstanding, that is.
- Claude Giroux plays for Philly...it would make sense to try and make sure he doesn't get any points. That'd be nice.
Jets (GP 61 29-26-6 64 PTS)
#16 Andrew Ladd -- #18 Bryan Little -- #26 Blake Wheeler
#9 Evander Kane -- #8 Alexander Burmistrov -- #13 Kyle Wellwood
#15 Tanner Glass -- #19 Jim Slater -- #22 Chris Thorburn
#17 Eric Fehr -- #80 Nik Antropov -- #14 Tim Stapleton
#39 Tobias Enstrom -- #33 Dustin Byfuglien
#29 Johnny Oduya -- #6 Ron Hainsey
#5 Mark Stuart -- #12 Randy Jones
#31 Ondrej Pavelec
Bogo still a Nogo
Flyers (GP 58 32-19-7 71 PTS)
#19 Scott Hartnell -- #28 Claude Giroux -- #93 Jakub Voracek
#48 Danny Briere -- #24 Matt Read -- #68 Jaromir Jagr
#21 James van Riemsdyk -- #10 Brayden Schenn -- #17 Wayne Simmonds
#47 Eric Wellwood -- #14 Sean Couturier -- #27 Maxime Talbot
#5 Braydon Coburn -- #44 Kimmo Timonen
#13 Pavel Kubina -- #25 Matt Carle
#8 Nicklas Grossman -- #41 Andrej Meszaros
#35 Sergei Bobrovsky
Player to boo mercilessly: IIIIIIIIIIILLLLLLLLLLLLYYYYYYYYYYYYAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA
Prediction: Winnipeg 3-2 Philadelphia. Gonna be a tight one. Jets going for the 4-0 season series sweep