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Forums :: Blog World :: Jacob Billington: An In-Depth Look at the Jets Start To The Season - Part 1: Forwards
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Jacob Billington
Ottawa Senators
Location: Westville, NS
Joined: 10.16.2021

Wednesday @ 11:23 AM ET
Jacob Billington: An In-Depth Look at the Jets Start To The Season - Part 1: Forwards
islansjet
Winnipeg Jets
Joined: 03.13.2017

Wednesday @ 2:16 PM ET
Nash and Toninato are 4th line players who are taking playing time away from younger draft and develop players. The 3rd line should consist of Lowry, Wheeler and Stastny while Harkins could play there if Wheeler or Stastny move up to the 2nd line. Svetch should stay with Dubois and Connor as his play complements the two of them. Scheifele and Ehlers need another good offensive winger to round out their line. Perfetti? What the Jets need the most is to have Maurice stop mixing the lines every couple of shifts.
Jacob Billington
Ottawa Senators
Location: Westville, NS
Joined: 10.16.2021

Wednesday @ 2:49 PM ET
Nash and Toninato are 4th line players who are taking playing time away from younger draft and develop players. The 3rd line should consist of Lowry, Wheeler and Stastny while Harkins could play there if Wheeler or Stastny move up to the 2nd line. Svetch should stay with Dubois and Connor as his play complements the two of them. Scheifele and Ehlers need another good offensive winger to round out their line. Perfetti? What the Jets need the most is to have Maurice stop mixing the lines every couple of shifts.
- islansjet


I think the most ideal lineup, as long as everyone is healthy and playing like we could expect:

Ehlers-Scheifele-Perfetti
Connor-Dubois-Svechnikov
Copp-Lowry-Wheeler
Harkins-Nash-Vesalainen
Toninato-Gustafsson

I think Copp could take one of the two top line winger spots filled by Perfetti adn Svechnikov, I would like to see Perfetti play in the top six, and the way things have been with Svechnikov on that line, I like him there too, but a little better if he had some more points. A better center to play with that fourth line (I am fine with Nash there, but I completely get the argument against it) and this is one of the deepest teams in the NHL up front.

On that note, a trade for a winger to replace one of the two twop six wingers on the right, is near impossible with the Jets being so tight against the cap, so other than Wheeler and Copp jumping up, there isn't much they could add. For the fourth line spot, that is completely within reason to trade for an upgrade. They can move some >$1 million players around and find a way to make that work, but truthfully, I don't see the Jets looking to trade anybody that is making any significant amount of money. Cheveldayoff will need lots of calculators and searches on CapFriendly to make any deals soon.
PuckPix
Joined: 01.12.2021

Wednesday @ 9:07 PM ET
I think the most ideal lineup, as long as everyone is healthy and playing like we could expect:

Ehlers-Scheifele-Perfetti
Connor-Dubois-Svechnikov
Copp-Lowry-Wheeler
Harkins-Nash-Vesalainen
Toninato-Gustafsson

I think Copp could take one of the two top line winger spots filled by Perfetti adn Svechnikov, I would like to see Perfetti play in the top six, and the way things have been with Svechnikov on that line, I like him there too, but a little better if he had some more points. A better center to play with that fourth line (I am fine with Nash there, but I completely get the argument against it) and this is one of the deepest teams in the NHL up front.

On that note, a trade for a winger to replace one of the two twop six wingers on the right, is near impossible with the Jets being so tight against the cap, so other than Wheeler and Copp jumping up, there isn't much they could add. For the fourth line spot, that is completely within reason to trade for an upgrade. They can move some >$1 million players around and find a way to make that work, but truthfully, I don't see the Jets looking to trade anybody that is making any significant amount of money. Cheveldayoff will need lots of calculators and searches on CapFriendly to make any deals soon.

- Jacob Billington


Those 4 lines look dynamite! WOW!
PuckPix
Joined: 01.12.2021

Wednesday @ 9:07 PM ET
How are the Jets losing in CLB tonight?
TheUltimateJet
Winnipeg Jets
Joined: 07.16.2013

Wednesday @ 9:41 PM ET
How are the Jets losing in CLB tonight?
- PuckPix


The Jets may have lost 3-0 on the ice.

Brother Blake and Uncle Paul keep winning in the locker room off of the ice!
Old Flopper
Location: Winnipeg, MB
Joined: 08.06.2020

Wednesday @ 9:45 PM ET
Yawn.

I recall Scheifle was amazing on the boards last year, this year, completly non existant. His right winger Wheeler looks gassed after about 25 seconds on the ice, a complete step behind.

This team needs a serious shake up. Maybe back to 7 D and 11F..........maybe new coaching staff?
JetFuel
Winnipeg Jets
Joined: 10.08.2019

Wednesday @ 10:32 PM ET
How are the Jets losing in CLB tonight?
- PuckPix


Easy, they're not nearly as good as the hype they get.
jetsnation
Winnipeg Jets
Location: Winnipeg, MB
Joined: 02.11.2015

Wednesday @ 11:33 PM ET
Yawn.

I recall Scheifle was amazing on the boards last year, this year, completly non existant. His right winger Wheeler looks gassed after about 25 seconds on the ice, a complete step behind.

This team needs a serious shake up. Maybe back to 7 D and 11F..........maybe new coaching staff?

- Old Flopper


I agree Schief looks a step off his game. Might be the lingering effects of Covid.

I have watched the action pretty closely with regards to Wheeler. It seems that 9 out of ten times the Jets possession ends on Wheeler's stick. I am amazed at how far his game has fallen off even since last year. Maurice can't keep playing him on the top two lines much longer. I respect his heart and determination and love for the Winnipeg community but at the end of the day the goal is to win games. To be quite honest the Jets played much better when he wasn't in the lineup. It's a dilemma for sure because he has earned loyalty points over the years and so he cant just be traded away but he needs to be demoted to 3rd or 4th line and see how it goes.
Jacob Billington
Ottawa Senators
Location: Westville, NS
Joined: 10.16.2021

Wednesday @ 11:37 PM ET
I agree Schief looks a step off his game. Might be the lingering effects of Covid.

I have watched the action pretty closely with regards to Wheeler. It seems that 9 out of ten times the Jets possession ends on Wheeler's stick. I am amazed at how far his game has fallen off even since last year. Maurice can't keep playing him on the top two lines much longer. I respect his heart and determination and love for the Winnipeg community but at the end of the day the goal is to win games. To be quite honest the Jets played much better when he wasn't in the lineup. It's a dilemma for sure because he has earned loyalty points over the years and so he cant just be traded away but he needs to be demoted to 3rd or 4th line and see how it goes.

- jetsnation


It is a very hard situation. A big positive for him is his ability to hold the line and keep possession on the PP. Definitely still an asset in the right situation
jetsnation
Winnipeg Jets
Location: Winnipeg, MB
Joined: 02.11.2015

Wednesday @ 11:38 PM ET
I'll add here one major beef I have with the Jets powerplay. Just about every team in the NHL enters the O-zone by dropping the puck back to the trailing defensemen ( or forward) and thereby freezing the opposing forwards. Its a high percentage and highly efficient way of gaining the O-zone. I can't for the life of me figure out why Maurice or the Jets PP units almost never use this proven method of O-zone entry. The last three to four games the PP has really suffered from poor entries. Time for a change !

Edit : I'll also add that in this 4-game losing streak the Jets have also not been cycling the puck up high as they did so successfully in the first 15 games. The down-low cycle game just isn't working for them and it just leads to a lot of outside low percentage shots which end up with loss of puck possession.
Jacob Billington
Ottawa Senators
Location: Westville, NS
Joined: 10.16.2021

Wednesday @ 11:39 PM ET
Also, I am just noticing the stats look a bit odd on mobile. My apologies, I will see if I can set them up to fit well on desktop and mobile for the next pieces
jetsnation
Winnipeg Jets
Location: Winnipeg, MB
Joined: 02.11.2015

Wednesday @ 11:40 PM ET
It is a very hard situation. A big positive for him is his ability to hold the line and keep possession on the PP. Definitely still an asset in the right situation
- Jacob Billington


There is no doubt he has been (and likely still is) ne of the game's elite passers , and as such he definitely deserves a spot on one of the PP units.
Jacob Billington
Ottawa Senators
Location: Westville, NS
Joined: 10.16.2021

Wednesday @ 11:40 PM ET
I'll add here one major beef I have with the Jets powerplay. Just about every team in the NHL enters the O-zone by dropping the puck back to the trailing defensemen ( or forward) and thereby freezing the opposing forwards. Its a high percentage and highly efficient way of gaining the O-zone. I can't for the life of me figure out why Maurice or the Jets PP units almost never use this proven method of O-zone entry. The last three to four games the PP has really suffered from poor entries. Time for a change !
- jetsnation


It's time for a change in a lot of places. While I agree, following suit with most other teams could work, there are different styles that fit every team. I would have to see what Maurice chooses to do with positioning on that zone entry and how things flow.
PuckPix
Joined: 01.12.2021

Thursday @ 12:29 AM ET
Jackets are playing a great team system under Larson. Getting timely goaltending too, 36 saves too by Merzlikins. Jets seem to be streaky, 2W, 2L, 3W, now 4L.
bikeguy99
New Jersey Devils
Joined: 09.05.2017

Thursday @ 10:30 AM ET
I agree Schief looks a step off his game. Might be the lingering effects of Covid.

I have watched the action pretty closely with regards to Wheeler. It seems that 9 out of ten times the Jets possession ends on Wheeler's stick. I am amazed at how far his game has fallen off even since last year. Maurice can't keep playing him on the top two lines much longer. I respect his heart and determination and love for the Winnipeg community but at the end of the day the goal is to win games. To be quite honest the Jets played much better when he wasn't in the lineup. It's a dilemma for sure because he has earned loyalty points over the years and so he cant just be traded away but he needs to be demoted to 3rd or 4th line and see how it goes.

- jetsnation


I say it every blog. Still decent on the 2nd PP as a passer off the wall, but a huge liability 5v5, especially in the D zone. Again, his buyout is very reasonable, and needs to be explored following this season. His buyout would free up an additional 4M next season, and 6M the next year, and that cap space could go to someone capable of helping this team our more than Wheeler. Especially if his game continues to decline. His play and even his interviews honestly look like a man who has suffered multiple concussions. I hope he is doing OK, and no denying that the guy has been a great leader, but his time is running out.
TheUltimateJet
Winnipeg Jets
Joined: 07.16.2013

Thursday @ 11:17 AM ET
I say it every blog. Still decent on the 2nd PP as a passer off the wall, but a huge liability 5v5, especially in the D zone. Again, his buyout is very reasonable, and needs to be explored following this season. His buyout would free up an additional 4M next season, and 6M the next year, and that cap space could go to someone capable of helping this team our more than Wheeler. Especially if his game continues to decline. His play and even his interviews honestly look like a man who has suffered multiple concussions. I hope he is doing OK, and no denying that the guy has been a great leader, but his time is running out.
- bikeguy99


This is a really good post!

I think what you are describing is talent evaluation. It takes a strong leader or in this case a coach to put players in positions to succeed.

I did find it interesting yesterday in that Pascal Vincent, someone who I thought should be Jets coach was able to formulate such a good plan with Brad Larsen to neutralize anything that the Jets were doing.
Rexypoo
Winnipeg Jets
Location: Yes
Joined: 02.08.2016

Thursday @ 12:03 PM ET
I say it every blog. Still decent on the 2nd PP as a passer off the wall, but a huge liability 5v5, especially in the D zone. Again, his buyout is very reasonable, and needs to be explored following this season. His buyout would free up an additional 4M next season, and 6M the next year, and that cap space could go to someone capable of helping this team our more than Wheeler. Especially if his game continues to decline. His play and even his interviews honestly look like a man who has suffered multiple concussions. I hope he is doing OK, and no denying that the guy has been a great leader, but his time is running out.
- bikeguy99


I think if you’re going that way, you only buy out the last year
bikeguy99
New Jersey Devils
Joined: 09.05.2017

Thursday @ 12:22 PM ET
I think if you’re going that way, you only buy out the last year
- Rexypoo


And that certainly is a fair debate. As of last week, I believe he had 117 points in his last 135 games, or something like that. Those are more than respectable numbers and certainly deserving of 8.25M AAV when you factor in leadership and his ability to step up and play centre in the events of injury. The contrast to that is the product we have seen in his past 20 games. He has played himself well out of the top 6, and if this keeps up, he may need out sooner than later. Given what he has done for this team, I am happy to give him the benefit of the doubt, so long as PoMo can understand that he needs a reduced role as well. I think the Jets could afford him for 1 more season, but it only makes sense if he is able to contribute at the level expected of a 4M UFA this offseason, otherwise it is a wasted opportunity. Hopefully a reduced role can lead to reduced turnovers, and a more efficient Wheeler. Jets will have 18M cap space plus whatever the increase is (rumored to be 1M), so with Copp/Dubois/Stastny/Svech/Harkins all leading the unsigned players, with an additional 5 players all probably looking around the 1M dollar mark, it just seems too tight to keep Wheeler if this keeps up. I really think Perfetti can help bridge some of Wheelers role, but just wish they could actually find some Right shooting wingers, as Nash and Wheeler have both left plenty to be desired.
2.0
Winnipeg Jets
Location: Dauphin, MB
Joined: 09.11.2017

Thursday @ 12:43 PM ET
I have Wheeler in my hockey pool (points only, limited trading). It hurts hanging on to him but it really is still too soon to write him off. It could be due either directly or indirectly to covid, he is typically a slow starter. Still, at best, his best days are behind him and his fade is not looking as slow and graceful as i thought it would be.

The only bright spot right now is that Stasny will be back forcing a shake up of the lines again, wherever he lands will benefit the whole lineup.
Old Flopper
Location: Winnipeg, MB
Joined: 08.06.2020

Thursday @ 2:10 PM ET
Just going to put a post in here and give Ultimate a break!

The PK is also hard to watch. The Jets don't play a pressure style, they just fall back into the box, or 1, 1, 2 and the opposition can move it around with no pressure.

Also, going back to Wheeler, I agree with JN that Wheeler deserves a spot on one of the PP units but not for 90 seconds. He is gassed after 35 - 40 seconds. Maybe getting Stats back can give boost as wel.

Also, JN mentioned that the Jets never drop the puck back on PP entry, but they sure used to when Buff was still playing. I can recall that play being used often back then but now, never.

Also agree with UJ in that PoMo can get outsmarted easily like he did with Pascal last night.
TheUltimateJet
Winnipeg Jets
Joined: 07.16.2013

Thursday @ 10:13 PM ET
Just going to put a post in here and give Ultimate a break!

The PK is also hard to watch. The Jets don't play a pressure style, they just fall back into the box, or 1, 1, 2 and the opposition can move it around with no pressure.

Also, going back to Wheeler, I agree with JN that Wheeler deserves a spot on one of the PP units but not for 90 seconds. He is gassed after 35 - 40 seconds. Maybe getting Stats back can give boost as wel.

Also, JN mentioned that the Jets never drop the puck back on PP entry, but they sure used to when Buff was still playing. I can recall that play being used often back then but now, never.

Also agree with UJ in that PoMo can get outsmarted easily like he did with Pascal last night.

- Old Flopper



Thanks man! I figured that I made such a good point that I would post it 11 times. LOL Geez, I did not realize that this site was having maintenance issues and I kept pressing post.
JetFuel
Winnipeg Jets
Joined: 10.08.2019

Friday @ 12:47 AM ET
Thanks man! I figured that I made such a good point that I would post it 11 times. LOL Geez, I did not realize that this site was having maintenance issues and I kept pressing post.
- TheUltimateJet


We can never question your commitment Ultimate.. 😂

Do we think Comrie gets the start against Calgary? Who comes out tomorrow if Stastny is good to go?
Pastor_Matt
Winnipeg Jets
Joined: 03.05.2018

Friday @ 9:14 AM ET
We can never question your commitment Ultimate.. 😂

Do we think Comrie gets the start against Calgary? Who comes out tomorrow if Stastny is good to go?

- JetFuel

I would guess Ves, PoMo's only been playing him 4-6 minutes a game...

I thought maybe his forum was a bit of an echo chamber, but over the past week I've made it a point to talk to anyone wearing Jets gear and they ALL agree, Wheeler needs to drop to the 3rd line and/or be limited to 15 minutes of ice time.