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Preview: Winnipeg Jets versus Florida Panthers

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The Jets are hoping to hunt down the Panthers.

NHL: Colorado Avalanche at Winnipeg Jets Terrence Lee-USA TODAY Sports

The Winnipeg Jets are back at it and playing the Florida Panthers in a game that holds some importance when it comes to the Jets needs at the trade deadline. If the Jets rack up any more injuries in the next week, they will probably be looking for insurance, if they remain at the current level of health, they will probably be able to get away with adding a fourth line centre and a defenceman to the team as well as the potential for a defensively responsible winger.

Outside of the deadline, it is imperative that the Jets keep on playing the style of game that got them so many wins. They have re-worked their lines so that they are better balanced. However, it is possible that they need each line to have a true puck retriever. This is why the Patrik Laine/Bryan Little/Nikolaj Ehlers line has looked off all year. Anyways, that is neither here nor there.

The Panthers are in town tonight and they have some very good players like Aleksander Barkov and Jonathan Huberdeau. The strength of the Panthers is in their offence. They have struggled to win this year, which is not uncommon for them. They finally have Roberto Luongo back to health, which is huge. They also have a decently strong group of forwards, but weakened it with bizarre moves at the expansion draft.

Who to Watch:

Aleksander Barkov is a multi-tooled player who is young and capable of anything. If only he was recognized a bit more around the hockey world. The Panthers did well drafting him ahead of Seth Jones.

Prediction:

Jets lose in a heartbreaking fashion just to mess with me.