August 26, 2019

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Opinion

Despite the flaws, Jets keep the faith

Hey there, time traveller!
This article was published 1/11/2011 (2854 days ago), so information in it may no longer be current.

There's lots not to like about the Winnipeg Jets in their current form, but the team's willingness to fight for one another and for wins is a sign this group may evolve into something much better than it is today.

Sitting at 4-6-1 and near the bottom of the standings in the NHL is reason to ask lots of questions about the Jets. The team's lack of scoring punch and undisciplined defensive approach are at the top of the list of negatives, but the Jets don't quit in games no matter the circumstance. Combined with some superior goaltending, this powerful self-esteem will cover up a lot of ugly until the rest of the team's game catches up.

Coach Claude Noel has been looking for ways to handle this team and he's gone from overconfident to standing on his chair with a whip, before settling into the patient professor role he's recently adopted and his charges are responding to.

Two late-game comeback wins and a 1-0 loss on this road trip are evidence the Jets are beginning to believe in themselves and Noel's message.

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Hey there, time traveller!
This article was published 1/11/2011 (2854 days ago), so information in it may no longer be current.

There's lots not to like about the Winnipeg Jets in their current form, but the team's willingness to fight for one another and for wins is a sign this group may evolve into something much better than it is today.

Sitting at 4-6-1 and near the bottom of the standings in the NHL is reason to ask lots of questions about the Jets. The team's lack of scoring punch and undisciplined defensive approach are at the top of the list of negatives, but the Jets don't quit in games no matter the circumstance. Combined with some superior goaltending, this powerful self-esteem will cover up a lot of ugly until the rest of the team's game catches up.

Coach Claude Noel has been looking for ways to handle this team and he's gone from overconfident to standing on his chair with a whip, before settling into the patient professor role he's recently adopted and his charges are responding to.

Two late-game comeback wins and a 1-0 loss on this road trip are evidence the Jets are beginning to believe in themselves and Noel's message.

Lost in the carnage of last week's 9-8 win over the Philadelphia Flyers was the team's resilience. Blowing a pair of four-goal leads before charging back with a pair of goals in the dying minutes left Noel both exasperated and hopeful.

Distaster

The goals against were a disaster but the willingness to keep pushing and working for a win gave him a nugget of positivity to build on.

Next game out they held the potent Tampa Bay Lightning to just one goal and despite the loss their was even more to feel good about.

Monday's 4-3 shootout win over the resurgent Florida Panthers was another step in the right direction. Sure there were too many penalties and rather than blow a lead and have to claw back for the win, it would be nice to see the Jets close out a game in smoother fashion.

But that's not Winnipeg's reality at this stage and they're more aware of their flaws than anyone else. They have to watch the video each morning after.

But still they believe in themselves and fight on. That's encouraging.

There's no question the Jets have talent, with youngsters Evander Kane, Zach Bogosian and Alexander Burmistrov getting better each game. Meanwhile, veterans Mark Stuart, Jim Slater, Tanner Glass, Andrew Ladd, Nik Antropov and Kyle Wellwood are solid NHLers.

Together they're forming a team and while there will be lots of long nights this season and many growing pains to witness, the will in the Jets room is obvious and beginning to assert itself.

Losing is a disease and, if allowed to infect a team, can ruin it. Only the players can keep the disease at bay and it comes down to self-confidence.

Maybe the Jets are a little deluded to believe as much in themselves as they do, but they do and it's helping. So if they want to look in the mirror and see a 10 instead of 5, so be it.

Who knows, maybe they'll be right sooner than we think.

gary.lawless@freepress.mb.ca Twitter: @garylawless

Today's Jets Report C3

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