Time: 7:00 PM CST
At this point last year, this would have been a nothing game. But this is not last year and this game is worth a lot more than nothing. The Islanders are this year’s PDO team as well as a team that has improved defensively and gotten better goaltending this season from Robin Lehner. Lehner is a great story unto himself because he has finally dealt with his demons and gotten the help he needs. It is great seeing anyone thrive given those circumstances.
Speaking of defence, the Jets have Dustin Byfuglien back at practice as of yesterday. While he will not return tonight, it does mean he is closer to returning and therefore the Jets are closer to looking like themselves again. This is a major plus for a team that has needed some good news for a while. Next up will be Josh Morrissey.
The Jets will most likely stay with their previous lines from the past two games, which I got oh so wrong in the last preview. The Kyle Connor - Kevin Hayes - Patrik Laine line seems to be working well for the Jets and Mark Scheifele turns any line into gold, so they should be fine as well. The bottom six might get shifted around some more, but that’s minor.
The Jets will have a hard-fought game tonight and they seem to do well in those, but the question still remains: what Winnipeg Jets team will we see tonight?