September 4, 2015


Severe thunderstorm watch in effect

Latest News

Blue Jackets slap Jets 6-3

Columbus Blue Jackets' Derek MacKenzie (24), Mark Letestu (55), RJ Umberger (18), Ryan Murray (27) and James Wisniewski (21) celebrate after Letestu's third-period goal on Winnipeg Jets' goaltender Ondrej Pavelec (31) in Winnipeg Saturday.

TREVOR HAGAN / WINNIPEG FREE PRESS

Columbus Blue Jackets' Derek MacKenzie (24), Mark Letestu (55), RJ Umberger (18), Ryan Murray (27) and James Wisniewski (21) celebrate after Letestu's third-period goal on Winnipeg Jets' goaltender Ondrej Pavelec (31) in Winnipeg Saturday. Photo Store

WINNIPEG -- Not only did they not stick when thrown against the wall, the line changes implemented by the Winnipeg Jets for tonight’s home game against the Columbus Blue Jackets proved one thing.

It’s defence, not combinations, that wins hockey games and the Jets have none of that right now.

The Blue Jackets, entering the game just three points out of the basement of the consensus worst division in the NHL, the Metropolitan, played 40 minutes at the MTS Centre and still had no trouble beating the Jets 6-3.

That’s five losses in a row, sinking Winnipeg to 19-23-5. It matches last season’s late-season swoon but last spring, the playoffs were amazingly still in sight. Right now, a top-three draft pick seems more likely.

The Jets jumped out smartly to a 1-0 lead on Eric O’Dell’s first NHL goal and had their chances to lead by more.

“The only way we’re getting out of this is sticking together

-Jets' captain Andrew Ladd.

And then, the crumbling began in the form of Mark Letestu’s shorthanded goal just 36 seconds into the second period.

"We had a good start then a few things go the other way and frustration sets in and we let it get the best of us and it continued to spiral after that," said Jets captain Andrew Ladd.

He agreed the team is clearly fragile in this spiral.

"I think you feel like you’re in a deep pit and you’re trying to crawl and scratch your way out of it," he said. "Maybe panic sets in a little bit. You don’t want the puck, you’re scared to make a mistake and things start to go the other way.

"The only way we’re getting out of this is sticking together."

Jets centre Bryan Little, who snapped an 11-game goal drought with a marker in the third, said the task gets all the more difficult.

"There’s definitely been tough times, definitely it’s magnified when you’re in Winnipeg," Little said. "I’ve had some tough times in Atlanta where no one seems to care. No one’s asking you questions, it’s not in the paper and people aren’t in the room after the game. There’s definitely more pressure right now to get out of this and it makes it a lot harder."

Oh, that defence

In the five-game losing streak, the Jets have surrendered 24 goals. They are quickly moving down the league’s goals-against chart and their deficit of goals scored vs. against is minus-17.

"One of the things is right now we suffer from confidence," said Jets coach Claude Noel. "There are some things we’re not doing very well. We’re not defending very well but we’re not even passing the puck very well. And even on breakout, we have the puck in our zone with full possession and no pressure and we don’t want the puck.

"We’re just rimming it to somebody else and it ends up back in our zone again. Right now, adversity is really the enemy and we’re not dealing with it very well."

Captain call-out

Ladd pointed the finger squarely at himself after his minus-two game.

"I’ll take full responsibility for my play," Ladd said. "I was awful tonight. For a team struggling, probably looking for leaders, I wasn’t very good. I need to be a lot better and I will be going forward."

Noel expanded on the observation.

"Sometimes he takes the burden of the team on his shoulders," the coach said. "That’s what good leaders do. I’ve got to try to help Andrew. A guy like him will have triple the effect of other players because of the burden he puts on himself.

"Trying too hard, that’s one of the problems you get. Trying too hard, you do more damage."

Line juggler

Every forward line was changed tonight with Dustin Byfuglien’s move to right wing with Little and Ladd and Evander Kane’s hand injury that kept him out.

The new combinations didn’t do anything terribly special and certainly didn’t cause an improvement to defending.

Here’s about the best thing that could be said, from Noel: "I thought Buff was OK. He got good support from the fans early, which was good to see."

 

tim.campbell@freepress.mb.ca

 

 

Live Winnipeg Jets Coverage Twitter bird

  • WFPEdTait

    @WFPEdTait: #NHLJets exit to boos at MTS Centre after dropping fifth straight, 6-3 to a Columbus Blue Jackets squad that won last night at home. 8:41 pm on Jan 11

  • WFPEdTait

    @WFPEdTait: #NHLJets Bryan Little breaks 11-game goal drought with his 15th. Jets back on PP trailing 5-3. 8:20 pm on Jan 11

  • DoubleEmMartin

    @DoubleEmMartin: You know that thing where you get a wound and then use a lighter to do a li'l DIY cautery and it hurts soo much until... nevermind #NHLJets 7:38 pm on Jan 11

  • WFPEdTait

    @WFPEdTait: Toby Enstrom blasts his 5th to pull the #NHLJets a bit closer; now down 4-2 to Blue Jackets. 7:36 pm on Jan 11

  • DoubleEmMartin

    @DoubleEmMartin: You know that thing where you sustain a tragic wound and dump rubbing alcohol on it and it hurts sooo much until it gets better? #NHLJets 7:35 pm on Jan 11

  • WFPEdTait

    @WFPEdTait: So that's four goals in 9:07 to start second period for the Blue Jackets and it's 4-1. Ugly with a capital 'Ugh' for the #NHLJets. 7:29 pm on Jan 11

  • PaulWiecek

    @PaulWiecek: Like a cheap lawn chair...#nhljets 7:28 pm on Jan 11

  • WFPEdTait

    @WFPEdTait: Boone Jenner scores on penalty shot against Ondrej Pavelec after being hauled down by Adam Pardy. Now 4-1 Blue Jackets over #NHLJets. 7:28 pm on Jan 11

  • RickRalphTSN

    @RickRalphTSN: 5 of the 6 shorthanded goals allowed by the #NHLJets this season have come at home. 7:22 pm on Jan 11

  • WFPEdTait

    @WFPEdTait: #NHLJets call time out after Cam Atkinson scores his 13th on tic-tac-goal passing play. 2-1 Blue Jackets. 7:17 pm on Jan 11

  • WFPEdTait

    @WFPEdTait: That was the sixth short-handed goal the #NHLJets have surrendered this year. Only Edmonton (8) and Philly (7) have given up more. 7:15 pm on Jan 11

  • WFPEdTait

    @WFPEdTait: #NHLJets PP gives up shorthanded goal to Mark Letestu. 1-1 tie. 7:12 pm on Jan 11

  • WFPEdTait

    @WFPEdTait: #NHLJets lead Blue Jackets 1-0 after 1. Early take to the all line juggling so far? Meh. 6:52 pm on Jan 11

  • WFPEdTait

    @WFPEdTait: #NHLJets have goal disallowed and 1:07 later get on the board when Eric O'Dell stuffs home his first career goal. 1-0 Wpg over CBJ. 6:24 pm on Jan 11

  • WFPEdTait

    @WFPEdTait: #NHLJets starters: Stuart, Trouba, Jokinen, Wheeler, Setoguchi and Pavelec. Scratched: Kane, Peluso, Redmond 5:59 pm on Jan 11

  • WFPEdTait

    @WFPEdTait: Story that didn't appear on our website this morning on #NHLJets line changes: winnipegfreepress.com/sports/hockey/… 12:59 pm on Jan 11

  • WFPHockey

    @WFPHockey: Byfuglien adjusting to new role as forward; true test comes tonight bit.ly/KNpb5q #NHLJets 12:28 pm on Jan 11

  • RickRalphTSN

    @RickRalphTSN: No Kane tonight for #NHLJets. Kane is not able. 11:20 am on Jan 11

  • WFPEdTait

    @WFPEdTait: #NHLJets Evander Kane has now left the ice after about 10 minutes. 9:40 am on Jan 11

  • WFPEdTait

    @WFPEdTait: Evander Kane on the ice this morning for #NHLJets. Dustin Byfuglien still wearing forward colours. 9:28 am on Jan 11

Winnipeg Jets' goaltender Ondrej Pavelec (31) stops a bouncing puck with Mark Stuart (5) and Columbus Blue Jackets' Boone Jenner (38) in front of the net during the first period at Winnipeg's MTS Centre Saturday.  (Trevor Hagan / Winnipeg Free Press)
Columbus Blue Jackets' James Wisniewski (21) and Winnipeg Jets' Olli Jokinen (12) look on as Devin Setoguchi (40) tries to bat the puck past goaltender Curtis McElhinney (31) during the first period Saturday. McElhinney made the circus save.  (Trevor Hagan / Winnipeg Free Press)
Columbus Blue Jackets' Jack Johnson (7) battles with Winnipeg Jets' Eric O'Dell (58) in the crease behind goaltender Curtis McElhinney (31). Then, O'Dell manages to put the puck in the net for his first career NHL goal during first period Saturday. (Trevor Hagan / Winnipeg Free Press)
Winnipeg Jets' Mark Scheifele (55) and Eric O'Dell (58) celebrate after O'Dell scored his first career NHL goal, during first period NHL hockey action against the Columbus Blue Jackets. (Trevor Hagan / Winnipeg Free Press)
Winnipeg Jets' Keaton Ellerby (7), Adam Pardy (2), Michael Frolik (67) and Mark Scheifele (55) celebrate with Eric O'Dell (58) after he scored his first career NHL goal.  (Trevor Hagan / Winnipeg Free Press)
Winnipeg Jets' Bryan Little (18) and Columbus Blue Jackets' James Wisniewski (21) collided during the first period of Saturday's game. (Trevor Hagan / Winnipeg Free Press)
Columbus Blue Jackets' Boone Jenner (38) scores a penalty shot goal against Winnipeg Jets' goaltender Ondrej Pavelec (31) during the second period Saturday. (Trevor Hagan / Winnipeg Free Press)
Columbus Blue Jackets' Nick Foligno (71) celebrates his second-period goal against the Winnipeg Jets as goaltender Ondrej Pavelec (31), Zach Bogosian (44) and Tobias Enstrom (39) look on. (Trevor Hagan / Winnipeg Free Press)
Columbus Blue Jackets' Boone Jenner (38) celebrates with his team after he scored a penalty shot goal against Winnipeg Jets' goaltender Ondrej Pavelec (31) in the second period at MTS Centre. (Trevor Hagan / Winnipeg Free Press)
Winnipeg Jets' Andrew Ladd (16) hits Columbus Blue Jackets' Nikita Nikitin (6) into the boards during second period NHL hockey action in Winnipeg Saturday. (Trevor Hagan / Winnipeg Free Press)
Winnipeg Jets' Dustin Byfuglien (33) tries to get out of the way of a point shot during the second period.  (Trevor Hagan / Winnipeg Free Press)
Winnipeg Jets' Tobias Enstrom (39) and Bryan Little (18) celebrate after Enstrom scored in the second period Saturday at MTS Centre. (Trevor Hagan / Winnipeg Free Press)
Winnipeg Jets' Tobias Enstrom (39) celebrates his second-period goal against the Columbus Blue Jackets. (Trevor Hagan / Winnipeg Free Press)
Winnipeg Jets' Andrew Ladd (16) battles with Columbus Blue Jackets' Artem Anisimov (42), Nikita Nikitin (6) goaltender Curtis McElhinney (31), and David Savard (58) for a loose puck during the second period Saturday. (Trevor Hagan / Winnipeg Free Press)
Winnipeg Jets' Blake Wheeler (26) and Olli Jokinen (12) skate together during second period hockey action against the Columbus Blue Jackets' at MTS Centre Saturday. (Trevor Hagan / Winnipeg Free Press)
Winnipeg Jets' Mark Scheifele (55) and Columbus Blue Jackets' Nikita Nikitin (6) watch a puck head to the corner in the second period Saturday. (Trevor Hagan / Winnipeg Free Press)
Columbus Blue Jackets' Brandon Dubinsky (17) plays the puck in the corner against the Winnipeg Jets at MTS Centre in Winnipeg Saturday. (Trevor Hagan / Winnipeg Free Press)
Gary and Kelly Depaulo brought their granddaughter, 21-month-old Jory Depaulo, to her first NHL hockey game. Kelly had to use other means to keep Jory entertained late in the third period as the Winnipeg Jets lost to the Columbus Blue Jackets at MTS Centre in Winnipeg Saturday. (Trevor Hagan / Winnipeg Free Press)
Winnipeg Jets' Blake Wheeler (26) nearly gets a puck in the face in front of Columbus Blue Jackets' goaltender Curtis McElhinney (31) during the third period Saturday. (Trevor Hagan / Winnipeg Free Press)
Columbus Blue Jackets' Derek MacKenzie (24), Mark Letestu (55), RJ Umberger (18), Ryan Murray (27) and James Wisniewski (21) celebrate after Letestu scored on Winnipeg Jets' goaltender Ondrej Pavelec (31) during the third period Saturday. (Trevor Hagan / Winnipeg Free Press)
History

Updated on Saturday, January 11, 2014 at 4:58 PM CST: Adds live Twitter feed.

6:54 PM: Updates first period score; changes headline.

7:26 PM: Updates score, changes headline after second period.

7:45 PM: Adds slideshow.

8:49 PM: Adds final score, changes headline.

9:48 PM: Changes photo after game.

10:26 PM: Adds post-game write-thru.

You can comment on most stories on winnipegfreepress.com. You can also agree or disagree with other comments. All you need to do is be a Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscriber to join the conversation and give your feedback.

Have Your Say

New to commenting? Check out our Frequently Asked Questions.

Have Your Say

Comments are open to Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscribers only. why?

Have Your Say

Comments are open to Winnipeg Free Press Subscribers only. why?

The Winnipeg Free Press does not necessarily endorse any of the views posted. By submitting your comment, you agree to our Terms and Conditions. These terms were revised effective January 2015.

Scroll down to load more

Top