Winnipeg Jets News, Rumors, Injuries & Recruiting
Winnipeg Free Press: Jets facing tough calls under cash crunch
JEFF ROBERSON / THE ASSOCIATED PRESS FILES
Could another NHL club try to take advantage of Winnipeg's financial woes and try to sign either Patrik or Kyle Connor?
VANCOUVER -- The Winnipeg Jets are bringing what they believe to be five quality prospects home from Vancouver -- along with plenty of questions about the more immediate needs of the team.
With the NHL draft now in the rear-view mirror, many of the answers will start emerging in the coming days.
The salary cap was set late Saturday at a lower-than-expected US$81.5 million for the 2019-20 season, so general manager Kevin Cheveldayoff knows exactly what he's up against.
Winnipeg Free Press: Jets believe draft picks are solid prospects
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VANCOUVER -- Mark Hillier is hoping the 2019 draft class for the Winnipeg Jets will be a case of quality over quantity.
While the Jets only had five picks over the two-day event here in Vancouver, they believe they've come away with five solid prospects who will help them down the road. That includes using the first two picks to land puck-moving defencemen from Finland and Sweden, a couple of centremen from Finland and Canada, and then an American goaltender.
My NHL Trade Rumors: NHL Rumors: San Jose Sharks, Vancouver Canucks, Pittsburgh Penguins, and the Edmonton Oilers
Kevin Kurz: The Sharks could be open to the idea of trading defenseman Brendan Dillon in the right deal. He carries a $3.27 million salary cap hit.
Pierre LeBrun: Pending free agent Joonas Donskoi has told the San Jose Sharks that he's going to be talking to other teams during the interview process. He's not closing the door on a Sharks return. He also thinks that it might be time for a new start.
Kevin Kurz: It wouldn't be a surprise if Sharks trade restricted free agent Joakim Ryan.
Winnipeg Free Press: Jets star forward a hit with kids
MARK Scheifele tries his best to share a moment with every child that participates in his annual two-day hockey camp at the Iceplex.
That's a mammoth task for the Winnipeg Jets centre -- there's 216 kids here this weekend, all wearing cages and No. 55 on their backs.
Jackson Deschambault got his moment with his hero Saturday morning. This fall, the eight-year-old Winnipegger will sign up for his second year of hockey at Kirkfield Westwood Community Centre.
And what words of encouragement did the Jets' premier forward offer up?
Winnipeg Free Press: Jets cast wide international net on Day 2
CHAD HIPOLITO / THE CANADIAN PRESS
Harrison Blaisdell speaks to media after being selected in the fifth round by the Winnipeg Jets during the second day of the NHL draft on Saturday.
VANCOUVER -- A Swedish defenceman. A Finnish forward. A centre with dual Canadian and British citizenship. And an American goalie.
The Winnipeg Jets cast a wide, international net on Saturday in their annual summer talent search, adding four more prospects to the pipeline as the 2019 NHL draft wrapped up in Vancouver.
"It's kind of how the draft lays out in front of us.
Winnipeg Free Press: Scheifele hosts hockey camp, keeps close tabs on draft
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Even on a day filled with lively distractions, Mark Scheifele still had his head in the game.
"Any trades?" the Winnipeg Jets forward quizzed reporters, shortly after stepping off the ice Saturday. "(P.K.) Subban? For what? Any others?"
As the hockey world turns in Vancouver this weekend for the NHL Draft, he's hosting hundreds of boys and girls at the fifth annual Mark Scheifele Hockey Camp in support of KidSport Winnipeg.
Winnipeg Free Press: Messi struggles with Argentina
Has a shirt ever weighed as heavily as Argentina's does on Lionel Messi?
Arguably the best footballer in history, the Barcelona maestro must secretly wish he had decided, back in 2003 when Spain invited him to be part of their squad for the Under-17 World Cup, to opt for the threads of La Roja instead of those of La Albiceleste -- stitching that has become synonymous with his only failing in a sport he has otherwise dominated for a generation: to lead the country of his birth to a first major title since 1993.
That fateful decision, even if it was the right one, seemed at the time a sort of repayment to Argentina, which Messi had left for the Catalan capital in order to strengthen his body, train at the world's top academy and prepare for his inevitable ascension to superstardom.
Winnipeg Free Press: Jets go with Finnish D-man
JONATHAN HAYWARD / THE CANADIAN PRESS
The Jets selected Finnish defenceman Ville Heinola with the 20th pick.
VANCOUVER -- Just call them the Finn-ipeg Jets.
Ville Heinola doesn't know much about his new hockey home, except for one thing -- they sure do love his country. The 18-year-old defenceman was added to the organizational prospect ranks Friday night, picked 20th-overall in the NHL draft by the Winnipeg Jets.
"I always look up to Patrik Laine. And being in the same organization feels good," the baby-faced Finn told reporters just moments after having his name called out by the Jets.
Winnipeg Free Press: 'A little bit of a change is a good thing': Maurice
VANCOUVER -- Regrets? Sure, Paul Maurice has a few. Just don't hold your breath expecting the admittedly stubborn head coach of the Winnipeg Jets to completely overhaul his style, or his philosophy, going forward.
In a wide-ranging chat Friday afternoon prior to the start of the NHL draft, the veteran bench boss shared his thoughts on numerous topics: losing to the eventual Stanley Cup champion St. Louis Blues in six games; his usage of young players; the Jacob Trouba trade and the state of his blue-line, player turnover caused by salary cap constraints; the leadership group on his team and whether changes are needed; and how to get his group back on track after falling short of high expectations.
Winnipeg Free Press: Jets season-opener pits Pionk against Trouba, Lemieux in New York
MIKAELA MACKENZIE/WINNIPEG FREE PRESS
VANCOUVER -- It appears the NHL schedule-maker has a flair for the dramatic.
How's this for starting the new season with a splash? The Winnipeg Jets will open the 2019-20 campaign at Madison Square Garden, facing Jacob Trouba, Brendan Lemieux and the rest of the New York Rangers. The Oct. 3 game will mark the home opener for the Broadway Blueshirts, who acquired the two former Jets in a pair of separate trades.
It will also mark a homecoming for the newest Jets defenceman, Neal Pionk, who travelled the other way last week in the Trouba swap.
Winnipeg Free Press: The good, the bad and the ugh...ly
Just imagine, if you will, what the Winnipeg Jets would have looked like without Connor Hellebuyck, Mark Scheifele, Patrik Laine, Kyle Connor, Nikolaj Ehlers, Josh Morrissey, Jacob Trouba, Adam Lowry and Andrew Copp in their lineup over the past couple seasons.
Not a pretty picture, is it?
What's notable about all of the above players is they are homegrown, drafted and developed talents. Not a free-agent signing or trade addition to be found among them. General manager Kevin Cheveldayoff and his staff identified them as potential difference-makers, and they've all paid off, forming a key part of the core while also setting the stage for future, sustained success.
My NHL Trade Rumors: A Look Into Kevin Hayes' Seven-Year Contract with the Philadelphia Flyers
Kevin Hayes signed a seven-year, $50 million contract with the Philadelphia Flyers Tuesday night. Philadelphia locks in a second-line center who can mesh well with their wingers. What impact may it have down the road and what does it mean now? Let's take a look.<strong>Kevin Hayes contract explained</strong>
Again, thanks to CapFriendly, contracts are easier to dive into quickly. He earns $7,142,857 for the 2019-20 campaign. Tentatively, there is no word of a no-move or no-trade clause. Also, it appears there are no signing bonuses at this time.
The salary cap hit comes in at $7.
Winnipeg Free Press: Friday's first-round NHL draft pool among deepest, most talented in many years, longtime scout says
The Winnipeg Jets won't be on the outside looking in Friday night.
The inevitable split with stud defenceman Jacob Trouba returned something that was once theirs and, undoubtedly, energized the club's amateur scouting staff in the process. Shipping Trouba to the New York Rangers earlier this week yielded fellow blue-liner Neal Pionk and, more importantly, the 20th overall selection in the 2019 NHL Draft.
The pick originally belonged to Winnipeg but was property of the Rangers following the Jets' acquisition of centre Kevin Hayes at the February trade deadline.
Winnipeg Free Press: Trade a shock for Pionk, but newest Jet excited, eager to contribute
Let's get one thing out of the way: Neal Pionk is no Jacob Trouba. He doesn't have the same pedigree. He doesn't have the same skill set. He doesn't have the same track record. And he'll likely never be a player like the one the Winnipeg Jets just traded away.
The obvious question, of course, is why general manager Kevin Cheveldayoff would possibly do the deal. Isn't he trying to build a Stanley Cup winner here?
There's no doubt swapping Trouba for Pionk means the Jets are weaker today on paper. But in a salary-cap world, you always have to keep one eye on the present and another on the future.
Winnipeg Free Press: Trade to Rangers caught Trouba by surprise
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A trade to the New York Rangers on Monday night shocked Jacob Trouba, despite his desire to leave Winnipeg in the past and the expectation in the hockey world he wouldn't be a Jet this fall.
"It was sure a surprise. I was cooking dinner and I got a phone call from (Winnipeg general manager Kevin Cheveldayoff). I knew there were rumours and talks about it but I didn't really expect it to happen last night," Trouba, 25, said this morning in a conference call.