Winnipeg Free Press - ONLINE EDITION

Buff, Burmistrov likely back soon

  • Print

TAMPA, Fla. – Expect both Dustin Byfuglien and Alex Burmistrov to be back in the Winnipeg Jet lineup ASAP.

Officially, whether the two players return Thursday against the Tampa Lightning will be a "game-time decision," according to head coach Claude Noel, but both men have practiced fully with the team for the last two days and declared themselves good to go after Wednesday’s session at the Tampa Bay Times Forum.

"I’m ready. I’m sick of sitting out and watching," Byfuglien said. "It’s not the funnest thing to be doing. But you’ve got to take care of yourself to be ready to go. I’ve been around and skating well and I feel ready to go. Everything is 100 per cent, it was just a matter of getting comfortable and getting used to the brace."

Byfuglien has been out of the Jets lineup since the Christmas holidays and has missed 16  games with a knee injury. During his absence the Jets were 7-8-1, but missed his physical presence and his point shot from the power-play. The big question now is how the club manages his minutes with three games in four nights.

"He looks good today," said Noel. "He’s on IR (injured reserve) so we have to do some things related to that and I haven’t spoken to Chevy (GM Kevin Cheveldayoff) yet and management. He looks like he’s coming along good, so we hope that he’s a player.

"We have to be intelligent about how things go with Buff. He hasn’t practiced much, he hasn’t played in four-five weeks with us. The fear that I have is does your team mentality change? Sometimes you think you’ve added a guy or two and you let up. I don’t think we’re there, I don’t think we’re at that stage. He brings a lot of stuff."

Meanwhile, Byfuglien’s court case from a boating incident last summer will also resume Thursday morning in Minneapolis with his lawyer Mitchell Robinson scheduled to meet with the prosecutor and judge in the case as part of a settlement conference. Byfuglien has pleaded not guilty to charges of boating while intoxicated, without navigational lights and proper flotation devices for the passengers on board and for refusing a blood or urine test.

"It’s a chance for me to meet with the prosecutor and the judge and talk about ways to try and settle the case," Robinson said Wednesday afternoon. "Most cases are settled at the settlement conference, probably about 85 per cent of them. I’m hoping we can hammer out something that everybody can live with, but if we don’t work out something favourable, we set the case for trial."

Robinson is hoping the settlement would involve agreeing to reduced charges for the flotation and navigational light infractions.

The Jets could also use Burmistrov’s skill. The gifted young Russian has missed the last two games after suffering a concussion when crashing into the boards in a loss to Carolina on Jan. 23.

"I feel good, no symptoms or anything," Burmistrov said. "I’m good to go, I think. That’s the first (concussion). Maybe for the first three days I felt dizzy, but right now it feels good.

"It’s really hard to watch. I think I was more tired than anybody last night. I feel tired and I didn’t play."

Twitter: @WFPEdTait


Updated on Wednesday, February 1, 2012 at 4:46 PM CST: updates with quotes from Byfuglien's lawyer

Fact Check

Fact Check

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.

* Required
  • Please post the headline of the story or the title of the video with the error.

  • Please post exactly what was wrong with the story.

  • Please indicate your source for the correct information.

  • Yes


  • This will only be used to contact you if we have a question about your submission, it will not be used to identify you or be published.

  • Cancel

Having problems with the form?

Contact Us Directly
  • Print

You can comment on most stories on 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.

You can comment on most stories on 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 April 16, 2010.


Make text: Larger | Smaller


Jets Preview: Little is back, Pavelec in net for tonight's game

View more like this

Photo Store Gallery

  • MIKE APORIUS/WINNIPEG FREE PRESS BUSINESS - cow on farm owned by cattle farmer Lloyd Buchanan near Argyle Wednesday afternoon -see Larry Kusch's story  January 04/2006
  • Carolyn Kavanagh(10) had this large dragonfly land on her while spending time at Winnetka Lake, Ontario. photo by Andrea Kavanagh (mom0 show us your summer winnipeg free press

View More Gallery Photos


What do you think the punishment should be for Dustin Byfuglien's cross-check on New York Rangers forward J. T. Miller?

View Results

View Related Story

Ads by Google