January 21, 2020

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Travel-weary Shore happy to be a Jet, hoping to stick around

Nick Shore (right) battles with Jets forward Andrew Copp in 2016 as a member of the L.A. Kings. (John Woods / The Canadian Press files)

Nick Shore (right) battles with Jets forward Andrew Copp in 2016 as a member of the L.A. Kings. (John Woods / The Canadian Press files)

DALLAS — He's put on a lot of miles the last two years but Nick Shore is hoping for some stability with the Winnipeg Jets, his new employer.

And the NHL club needs some of that same stuff in return.

Looking to bolster a little-used, under-achieving fourth line, Winnipeg claimed the veteran centre off waivers from the Toronto Maple Leafs Wednesday.

While he bounced back and forth from centre to wing in Toronto, his only desire now is to gain the trust of his new coach and teammates, wherever he slots in.

"If you look at this team they've been really successful the last number of years with a core group that's done really well, and I'm just hoping to bring a strong 200-foot game and be able to contribute at both ends of the ice," he said Thursday. "Just be ready to go when my number's called."

Known as a reliable checker and solid at the faceoff dot, he's being held back a few days before he makes his Jets debut. Head coach Paul Maurice said Thursday he prefers the 27-year-old from Denver participate in another full practice to get accustomed to the Central Division team's systems before suiting up in jersey No. 21.

The Jets host the Anaheim Ducks Sunday at 2 p.m.

Shore had two goals and an assist in 21 games with the Maple Leafs this season. The 6-1, 200-pound forward signed with Toronto in the summer after spending the 2018-19 season with Magnitogorsk Metallurg of the Kontinental Hockey League.

The year before that, he started his fourth season with the L.A. Kings but was dealt to the Ottawa Senators in February 2018 and then swapped to the Calgary Flames just a few weeks later. He finished with five goals and 14 helpers in 64 contests.

Los Angeles Kings' Nick Shore is congratulated after scoring a goal against the Florida Panthers during the  Friday, Feb. 9, 2018, in Florida. (Lynne Sladky / The Associated Press files)

Los Angeles Kings' Nick Shore is congratulated after scoring a goal against the Florida Panthers during the Friday, Feb. 9, 2018, in Florida. (Lynne Sladky / The Associated Press files)

Shore offered few details on his stint in southwestern Russia, other than it was a unique springboard to return to the NHL.

"Nothing really came to fruition that summer (2018), so at that point you weigh your options. I think everyone goes over with the goal of wanting to get back," he said. "That was a first for me, obviously a different experience, a good experience, bit of a culture change, but at the same time, you go through years like that and build off it and, headed into this year, I was happy to be back on this side (of the world)."

One of his usual wingers in Magnitogorsk was Jets prospect Andrei Chibisov, currently with the Manitoba Moose.


Seeing Luca Sbisa take a skate to the nether regions Tuesday likely caused a collective wince from the male set watching the Jets-Stars clash either live or on the evening highlights.

The Jets defenceman emphasized the impact from the inadvertent boot by Stars forward Alexander Radulov to his groin area was, indeed, as excruciating as it looked.

"That's gotta be way up there, yeah. I would rather take a one-timer off my bare foot than do that again, at least for the initial 15 minutes," Sbisa said.

"It happened quick. You get high-sticked in the face and you don't know if you lost no teeth or five teeth, it's just pain. It was the same thing. I didn't know if I actually got cut or what, just pain. So, you go to the locker room and make sure everything's still there."

Sbisa was hurt in the third period of Winnipeg's 5-1 victory and didn't return. However, he was expected back on the blue line at American Airlines Center Thursday night.

jason.bell@freepress.mb.ca

Twitter: @WFPJasonBell

Jason Bell

Jason Bell
Assistant sports editor

Jason Bell wanted to be a lawyer when he was a kid. The movie The Paper Chase got him hooked on the idea of law school and, possibly, falling in love with someone exactly like Lindsay Wagner (before she went all bionic).

Read full biography

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