Time: 6:00 CT
TV: TSN 3
Radio: TSN 1290
After a big New Year’s Eve win against Colorado, the Winnipeg Jets have started the new decade with two losses, against Toronto and Minnesota. Their schedule for January is tough, beginning tonight against the Montreal Canadiens at the Bell Centre. The Jets are 3-5-2 in their last 10 games, and are currently sitting just outside of the last wildcard playoff spot in the Western Conference.
The good news for the Jets is that it looks like Andrew Copp may be returning from injury tonight, and fan favourite Sami Niku (#freeniku) will be inserted back into the line up, hopefully for the remainder of the season. Montreal is the city where Niku scored his first NHL goal, so it’s the perfect setting for his return.
The Jets have cooled off recently and are essentially the team we thought they would be at the beginning of the year. They overachieved early thanks in large part to Connor Hellebuyck, who has been outstanding overall, and has definitely been the team’s MVP. Alas, without all-world goaltending, the Jets are a team that will struggle to make a wildcard playoff spot.
The Montreal Canadiens are in a similar position in the Eastern Conference. Their record is 3-6-1 in their last 10 games, and they are also currently sitting outside of a wildcard playoff spot. The Canadiens will be desperate for a win tonight, having lost the last five games, with their last win coming against the Jets on December 23.
Kyle Connor - Mark Scheifele - Patrik Laine
Nikolaj Ehlers - Blake Wheeler -Jack Roslovic
Andrew Copp - Adam Lowry - Mathieu Perreault
Gabriel Bourque - Nick Shore - Mason Appleton
Josh Morrissey - Tucker Poolman
Luca Sbisa - Neal Pionk
Anthony Bitetto - Sami Niku
F Bryan Little, D Dmitry Kulikov, F Mark Letestu, D Nathan Beaulieu, D Dustin Byfuglien (suspended)
Tomas Tatar - Phillip Danault - Nick Cousins
Artturi Lehkonen - Max Domi - Nick Suzuki
Ryan Poehling - Jesperi Kotkaniemi - Jordan Weal
Lukas Vejdemo - Nate Thompson - Dale Weise
Ben Chiarot - Shea Weber
Victor Mete - Jeff Petry
Marco Scandella - Cale Fleury
F Brendan Gallagher, F Paul Byron, F Joel Armia, F Jonathan Drouin, F Matthew Peca