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9 days until Jets opener

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FAQ: Lockout update

 

Q: Still no schedule?

A: Patience, grasshopper. The process is inching along. The NHL's owners endorsed the new CBA unanimously on Wednesday. The players' side must still do so, and that's expected to conclude by Saturday. The league does not want to release any details until everything is buttoned down. We do know several opening-day matchups, however, that have been leaked out. The Ottawa Senators will be here for the opener, an afternoon game. Toronto is going to be in Montreal, and Pittsburgh in Philadelphia, from what we've heard.

 

Q: So what does that mean for training camp?

A: Matters will probably begin on Sunday, the way things looked as of late Wednesday.

 

Q: Same old non-answer about my Jets' season tickets?

A: Unfortunately, yes. The team will undoubtedly be ready to spring into action with information and distribution and news about the tickets that remain for the public. But its hands are tied until the NHL and the NHLPA complete their ratification processes.

 

Q: Heard some chatter that NHL teams were going to use their AHL teams for tackling dummies, er .... scrimmage partners in training camp next week. Is that true? What about the Jets?

A: It is true, that a couple of teams like Pittsburgh and Vancouver are considering such a plan. The Jets are not. Respect for their banged-up AHL club is one reason; geography is likely another.

 

Q: What's the status of Jets getting into town?

A: There were a few more skating with their teammates on Wednesday. Dustin Byfuglien, Ron Hainsey, Grant Clitsome and Al Montoya were all on the ice for the first time here on Wednesday. Ondrej Pavelec was at the Iceplex but did not skate.

 

Q: Oh yeah, the Jets signed Montoya to be Pavelec's backup. What's he been doing?

A: Montoya stayed near his Chicago home and worked out regularly with several Blackhawks and other players in the area. He said Wednesday he's raring to go with the Jets. "It's a young team going in the right direction," Montoya said. "It's a city that loves hockey. I feel very fortunate to be in the city, getting a chance to play here. I just want the season to start. We're ready to go."

 

-- Tim Campbell

Republished from the Winnipeg Free Press print edition January 10, 2013 D2

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