Almost 15 years later, we’re less than 24 hours away from the official return of the Winnipeg Jets; and of all teams to play its the historic Montreal Canadiens. Tomorrow's contest at the MTS Center is a huge, and the key will be the first 10 minutes. If the Habs can quite the crowd; it will go along way to ensure they do not go 0-2. The Jets will do anything and everything to keep the loud crowd in the game. Make no mistake, the crows will resemble that of a game 7 Stanley Cup Final.
Jets defense must punish the Habs
Montreal dominated the first 20 minutes in Toronto on Thursday outshooting the Leafs 13-4. But after the first period, the Leafs defenseman; mainly Luke Schenn and Mike Komisarek punished the Canadiens smurf like forwards, taking their will away. The Habs went onto lose 2-0.
We need big Dustin Byfuglien to do exactly the same thing, Montreal has very little size and grit to stop us from hammering them.
What will the 2nd & 3rd line look like?
Remember the final pre-season game against Nashville? The 2nd line was Patrice Cormier (now in St. Johns), Alexander Burmistrov and Nik Antropov. Will the newly claimed Brett Maclean take Cormier’s place on that line? The third line against the Predators was Evander Kane, Kyle Wellwood and Mark Scheifele; one can argue we had two second lines. The argument will be made to have Kane on the line with Burmistrov and Antropov. I personally would keep the lines the same for awhile. The only top nine forward I’m not crazy about is Wellwood; I do not feel like he earned his roster spot. Give him a few games, but if he is still lazy in his backcheck, or slow in making the line change... basically doesn’t give a shit; get rid of him and give Cormier and/or Stapelton a chance.