The Winnipeg Jets remain the odd ducks that they are. They have played most of this season without their head coach due to him having COVID and dealing with a difficult recovery. They have played some games in some weird time zones. And they have had some really, really rough first periods. Can the Jets change this?
Of course they can as the season has just started, but it is an issue that this is becoming a small pattern in the Jets play. If they can nip it in the bud now, they will be better off long term. So what is the issue and what can they do to change it?
Slow starts. The Jets are back to starting slow and needing to warm up to games. Instead of starting the game ready to go, they are starting slow and relying on their goalie to give them a chance. This has been their mode of operation for a couple seasons now and it is probably because they have a goalie they can rely on and the fact they do not necessarily have the talent to outright beat teams. But the slow starts almost certainly have to do with coaching.
The Jets have barely had their head coach this season. Thanks to COVID and the lingering after effects, Rick Bowness has coached the Jets for one game this year. While the coaching staff has filled in admirably in his absence, but it is a key part of the job of the coaches and the Jets have been failing in this regard for years now. They have cost themselves too many points by not being ready to play in the first period. It is borderline unprofessional.
Due to the weird circumstances of the Jets current season, we should watch this to see how it plays out over a longer term. If it persists it should be seen as an issue no matter who the coaching staff is. The Jets are professionals and they have been having multiple games like this a season for a few seasons now. Instead, the Jets have to look at the players on the team to see if a personnel change there would help mitigate this issue. Who knows if this is a fixable habit, but it would be great if they were able to.