Winnipeg Free Press - ONLINE EDITION
Posted: 02/27/2013 11:17 AM | Comments: 0
Last Modified: 02/27/2013 12:31 PM | Updates
WINNIPEG — Winnipeg Jets coach Claude Noel said today that a quiet confidence is emerging within his team, accounting for four wins in five games from the just-completed longest road trip of the season.
Even better, the Jets have been getting results in close games.
Ignoring empty-net goals, four of their five recent road games and 10 of their last 11 have been one-goal affairs. With three wins in that category on the road in the last week, Winnipeg is 5-5 in the one-goal games since Feb. 5.
"The players, the coaches, they would rather win where there’s no so much anxiety," Noel told reporters this morning. Today’s a day off for his team, which faces the New Jersey Devils here Thursday night (7 p.m., TSNJets, TSN1290).
"I think the fact we’re winning close games is a good thing because it’s a real test on your resolve. A lot of times it tests your character and confidence, (because) it becomes brittle."
That was the case at home before the road trip, when the Jets lost four straight at the MTS Centre.
"We seem to embrace (close games) right now," Noel said. "We’re not afraid of it. You could have looked two weeks ago during a stretch of time where you play like you’re waiting for the wheels to fall off where now we’re looking forward to the game and knowing a quiet confidence makes us feel like this is under control."
Elements that are helping the team and that have helped its record back to .500 at 9-9-1 have been more won battles in key areas of the ice, moving the puck ahead more frequently and putting it in the right areas, Noel said.
"And I think we’ve got some timely goals," he said.
Today, the Jets sent defenceman Julian Melchiori and goalie Eddie Pasquale back to St. John’s of the AHL, without playing either player.
Defenceman Derek Meech has been recalled from St. John’s and backup goalie Al Montoya is ready for action, Noel said today.
The coach also said defenceman Toby Enstrom, out since Feb. 17, is feeling better today. Noel said Enstrom may skate soon but still labelled him week-to-week. Enstrom has missed six games.
Updated on Wednesday, February 27, 2013 at 12:31 PM CST: Updated and new headline
Have you found an error, or know of something we’ve missed in one of our stories? Please use the form below and let us know.
Having problems with the form?Contact Us Directly
Manitoba starts uh-0 and 2
'The dialogue has started' on missing women
Republicans' fast-shifting presidential horserace
Portrait of Queen will be home again soon
Nemtsov a possible 'sacrificial victim,' investigators say
Brier in Calgary has a freshmen feel
We failed on ER fixes, WRHA says
Crowdfunding nets $20,000 for woman in hijab dispute
Better plane tracking trialed after Malaysia plane mystery
Hellebuyck, IceCaps blank Sharks 2-0
Blackhawks acquire Antoine Vermette from Coyotes
Ice cream parlour? Bike shop? Submit your ideas for Esplanade Riel
Next stop? Broadway... in Crystal City
Heat say Bosh has been released from hospital
B.C. polygamous leader seeks to quash charge
Jagr makes Florida debut in Panthers' win over Sabres
Vince Li secures increased freedoms
Your weekend weather
Milder, but still cold
Madonna's comedy plans
Jets' Wheeler ready to go back to work against Kings
Police seek help in finding 15-year-old girl
No more overnight parking ban on snow routes
Kingsbury wins sixth straight World Cup event
Fighting the evil within: The case for and against the Anti-Terrorism Act
Carruthers? Win? Yeah, right
First 2015 flood forecast a mixed bag
Hundreds attend funeral for Elijah Marsh
Murder mystery slays new series competition
Province forecasting year-end deficit to grow by $37M to $394M
Oh, brother: The MacIvers will do almost anything on their crazy car commercials
Commission tackles issue of service dogs
Free Press, Brandon Sun photographers nominated for national awards
Flood risk normal or above normal in western Manitoba
Key of Bart - A Criminal Mind
Troubled hockey star fought his demons in the alley, but he beats them onstage
Vet reviews now only every three years
Leonard Nimoy, famous as Mr. Spock on 'Star Trek,' dies
Quebec hijab decision sparks widespread criticism
Unregistered massage therapist to give Manitoba courses, regulator says