The 5 most important things said Friday
1. Paul Maurice on the future, and more scrimmaging at training camp because it will be productive.
“The foundation has to be gone over again,” he said. “I already know that training camp has changed, with what the first four days are going to look like and how we’re going to run that camp and what we’re going to do this year, that I didn’t feel comfortable doing with our team last year.”
2. Pavelec is the Jets’ No. 1
“We don’t think Ondrej has reached his capacity yet,” GM Kevin Cheveldayoff said. “We still think there’s room for him to continue to grow. And we’re excited to have him as the No. 1 goalie in the organization.”
3. Different feeling at season’s end
“It’s a completely different emotion (than years past),” Blake Wheeler said. “It’s less pissed off and more... I don’t know what the right word is... it hurts a little bit different now because we’re right there, where before we could talk all we wanted about being a playoff team but we weren’t as close as we are now. There’s excitement, disappointment, a lot of different emotions. But, mostly good things.”
4. This is tough. More to come
“I had hoped to be in a playoff game before I was 27,” said Bryan Little. “But I think you realize how hard it is to get in.”
5. Helping the GM
Cheveldayoff expressed great interest in retaining UFA’s and RFA’s. He just got some help. “We talk about the atmosphere, we talk about the passion, but there’s no better sales pitch than what we just went through with those two playoff home games,” he said. “The community came through in the best fashion possible.”
5. Paul Maurice, Part II
“I had more fun coaching this team than any other year that I’ve had.”
The 5 most important things not said Friday
1. Flaw dissection
There wasn’t much talk Friday about what’s the matter with the Jets, which took up the majority of previous end-of-season interviews. The team’s biggest improvement, its goals against, to 2.44 per game and into the NHL’s top 10 of defences, was mentioned about once. “We cut down on the number of goals against, things like that that you need to be successful,” GM Kevin Cheveldayoff said.
2. Nik Ehlers for 2015-16
The 2014 first-round pick may indeed be an option for the Jets in the fall. But if the scoring dynamo is not ready, his team for the season looks very uncertain. Ehlers didn’t indicate he has even the least bit of interest in returning to the QMJHL if he must. Since he’s under contract, the Jets have more than a little say. Could Europe be an option if the NHL is not in the cards right away?
3. Who’s No. 1?
GM Kevin Cheveldayoff did not identify which free agents were his priority.
4. Frolik’s wish
UFA Michael Frolik was fairly positive about his Winnipeg experience and said he liked playing here, but mostly deferred questions about his future to his agent. His agent doesn’t comment on such matters.
5. Silent three
Dustin Byfuglien, Toby Enstrom and pending UFA Jim Slater were not available for interviews on Friday.