Some have discussed the increased level in competition at the start, as the Pittsburgh Penguins, Ottawa Senators, and Boston Bruins are considered strong teams and their current placement of second, third and fourth in Eastern Conference Fenwick percentages would back that up.
However, the Jets opened the 2011-12 season with three of their first five games against future playoff teams, so what has changed?
Well, simply put, the Jets have improved in almost every statistical category in this year-over-year chart.
A few notes:
- Even-strength scoring has doubled, with goals coming from all four lines thanks to the Jets' newfound scoring depth.
- Even-strength goals against have improved as well, mostly due to a dramatic improvement in Ondrej Pavelec's save percentage from a 0.877 to a 0.932 in his first four games from 2011-12 to 2013.
- The powerplay has improved dramatically to 13th place in the league, although this may be due to luck than effectiveness (Byfuglien's powerful rocket aside) as the Jets have had difficulty in sustaining real offensive opportunities on the man advantage.
- The penalty kill still remains as one of the team's low points, ranked 20th in the league, although discipline has decreased the Jets' PK occurrences from nineteen to eleven.