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Lowry impresses in Jets' 2-1 loss

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Jason Franson / The Canadian Press

Winnipeg Jets Zach Bogosian (left) and Edmonton Oilers Mark Arcobello (right) battle for the puck in the corner during the first period.

You only get one chance to make a good first impression, as the old saying goes, and Adam Lowry’s Winnipeg Jets pre-season debut certainly has the club’s brass and faithful now uttering one collective refrain:

"More, please."

The Jets fell 2-1 to the Edmonton Oilers at Rexall Place Monday night in a sloppy, penalty-filled contest that had most desperately wishing to fast forward to the real games next week. But — for the Jets at least — the most-interesting subplot was the debut of Lowry, the club’s big centre whose stock within the organization could best be represented by an arrow pointing straight up into the stratosphere.

Lowry, who missed the first chunk of training camp after crashing into the end boards on the first day, jumped off the page in his very first shift of the preseason, blasting a pair of Oilers with a couple of molar-rattling hits. He had five hits in just five shifts in the first, picked up a couple more in the second and was steady all night in the faceoff circle.

Live Winnipeg Jets Coverage Twitter bird

  • WFPEdTait

    @WFPEdTait: #NHLJets Jacob Trouba with another solid night. 22 minutes, +1, two blocked shots 11:59 pm on Sep 23

  • WFPEdTait

    @WFPEdTait: #NHLJets Chris Thorburn on his fluke goal: "Goal scorer's goal, right? I'll take it." 11:56 pm on Sep 23

  • WFPEdTait

    @WFPEdTait: #NHLJets Adam Lowry "I was pretty excited to get it under way. I was a little nervous during the day, just anxious to get it under way" 11:40 pm on Sep 23

  • WFPEdTait

    @WFPEdTait: #NHLJets Claude Noel said Zach Bogosian tweaked something and will be day to day. Didn't sound too serious 11:34 pm on Sep 23

  • WFPEdTait

    @WFPEdTait: Still no sign of Zach Bogosian on the #NHLJets bench. He did take a shot off the foot earlier. 10:55 pm on Sep 23

  • WFPEdTait

    @WFPEdTait: Oilers score twice in second and lead the #NHLJets 2-1 after two. 10:08 pm on Sep 23

  • WFPEdTait

    @WFPEdTait: Devan Dubnyk with a good stop on Olli Jokinen to keep the #Oilers ahead of the #NHLJets 2-1. 10:06 pm on Sep 23

  • WFPEdTait

    @WFPEdTait: Bad giveaway by Grant Clitsome leads to turnover and Patrice Cormier penalty. #NHLJets will be down two men for 30 seconds 9:54 pm on Sep 23

  • WFPEdTait

    @WFPEdTait: Olli Jokinen to the box for the #NHLJets for interfence 9:51 pm on Sep 23

  • WFPEdTait

    @WFPEdTait: #Oilers go up 2-1 on a redirect by Will Acton behind Eddie Pasquale. Think that the #NHLJets netminder would like that one back. 9:48 pm on Sep 23

  • WFPEdTait

    @WFPEdTait: Jesse Joensuu slips behind Zach Bogosian to tip home pass from Mark Arcobello. 1-1 #Oilers. #NHLJets 9:37 pm on Sep 23

  • WFPEdTait

    @WFPEdTait: Zach Bogosian led all #NHLJets with 8:20 of ice time. Followed by Trouba at 8:04. Kane has three shots. Adam Lowry had five hits. 9:23 pm on Sep 23

  • WFPEdTait

    @WFPEdTait: #NHLJets lead 1-0 after 1. Have liked Trouba, Pasquale, Pardy, Lowry among others through 20 minutes. 9:13 pm on Sep 23

  • WFPEdTait

    @WFPEdTait: #NHLJets Chris Thorburn scores a cheapie on Devan Dubnyk. 1-0 Winnipeg. 9:11 pm on Sep 23

  • WFPEdTait

    @WFPEdTait: #NHLJets to PP as Ladislav Smid heads to the box for hitting Chris Thorburn from behind, 9:04 pm on Sep 23

  • WFPEdTait

    @WFPEdTait: Penalty parade continues. Evander Kane off now for hooking. #NHLJets. 8:53 pm on Sep 23

  • WFPEdTait

    @WFPEdTait: ...And that's the end of that PP for Oilers as Boyd Gordon goes to the box. Two Gordons in the sin bin. #NHLJets 8:53 pm on Sep 23

  • garylawless

    @garylawless: Nice to see adam Lowry healthy and in #nhljets lineup$ just had a great shift 8:53 pm on Sep 23

  • WFPEdTait

    @WFPEdTait: #NHLJets on the PK again as Andrew Gordon off for charging. 8:50 pm on Sep 23

  • WFPEdTait

    @WFPEdTait: Heard a faint, but clearly audible 'True North!' from #NHLJets fans here in Edmonton 8:38 pm on Sep 23

  • WFPEdTait

    @WFPEdTait: #NHLJets starters: Jokinen, Kane, Frolik, Clitsome, Bogosian and Pasquale. 8:38 pm on Sep 23

  • WFPEdTait

    @WFPEdTait: #NHLJets assign five more to St. John's: D Julian Melchiori and Ben Chiarot, G Michael Hutchinson, F Carl Klingberg and Jerome Samson. 2:10 pm on Sep 23

  • MitchPeacock1

    @MitchPeacock1: (2/2) #nhljets tonight: Clitsome-Bogosian, Stuart-Redmond, Pardy-Trouba. #cbcmb 11:17 am on Sep 23

  • MitchPeacock1

    @MitchPeacock1: #NHLJets tonight: Kane-Jokinen-Frolik, Thorburn-Gordon-Cormier, Telegin-Lowry-Peluso, Wright-O'Dell-Halischuk. (1/2) #cbcmb 11:16 am on Sep 23

WHAT TO DO?

The juicy decision with Lowry now is what to do with him in the immediate days ahead. He is exactly the kind of centre this organization desperately needs, especially with the move to a Western Conference that is stacked with ginormous pivots.

That said, while it might be tempting to keep him with the big club and see how the 20-year-old centre might develop, it still looks like he could use some polish in St. John’s — especially with his abbreviated training camp. But if he keeps improving this quickly, he might be on Kevin Cheveldayoff’s speed dial for a quick call-up to the bigs. As third-round picks (67th overall in 2011) he is tracking to be a dandy.

WELCOME TO THE WEST, JETS

Winnipeg generated few quality offensive chances — their lone goal was a Chris Thorburn knuckler that fooled Devan Dubnyk — and seldom made the big netminder's night difficult. And this is exactly how the game is played in their new neighbourhood.

Of course, a lineup that features a second line of James Wright-Eric O’Dell-Matt Halischuk — the Andrew Ladd-Bryan Little-Blake Wheeler trio did not make the trip — hardly screams out ‘prolific.’

The Jets were not without their opportunities, going uh-oh-for-the night on the power play. But two defensive lapses, one by Zach Bogosian, the other by Anthony Peluso, ended up with the puck deposited behind Eddie Pasquale. That’s the kind of stuff that has to get cleaned up in advance of the regular season.

A VET RETURNS

It was hardly a classic, but Chris Thorburn — who is battling to keep his gig as a fourth-line energy guy/tough hombre — will do anything to help his cause. Making his pre-season debut, the veteran winger scored and served up his usual up-and-down, straight-line game.

"It definitely feels good. The better part is I’m finally in game action here," Thorburn told TSN 1290 after the first period. "(Missing time) is something I’ve never been through before. I’ve usually participated through training camp. It was definitely nice to get out and be in a competitive setting."

WHO WE LIKED

Jacob Trouba was solid again, eating up a lot of minutes, playing in all situations and looking nothing like a 19-year-old defenceman.

Evander Kane was without his new linemate in Devin Setoguchi, who did not make the trip, but led the Jets in shots again and played with an edge that is the trademark of his best games.

Michael Frolik may have been a role player in Chicago, but with the increased ice time in Winnipeg may be a double-digit third-line goal man the Jets crave.

Eddie Pasquale might like to have the Oilers’ second goal back — a Will Acton tip of an Anton Belov pass that squeezed through him — but he was again solid for the Jets. His immediate future is likely in St. John’s, but if he can be consistent down on The Rock, the club likely won’t hesitate calling him up if there is an injury to Ondrej Pavelec or Al Montoya.

Zach Bogosian left the game in the third period. He did take a shot off the foot in the final frame.

ed.tait@freepress.mb.ca

Twitter: @WFPEdTait

 

 

History

Updated on Monday, September 23, 2013 at 2:22 PM CDT: Updates with players moved to the IceCaps.

5:19 PM: Adds embed code for live coverage.

9:14 PM: Updates headline after first period.

11:04 PM: Adds headline after game's end.

11:18 PM: Adds slide show.

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