Winnipeg will close out its season tonight when they host the Montreal Canadiens. Although not quite dead, Winnipegs playoff hopes are definitely on life support. Winnipeg needs to win tonight and have either the New York Rangers or Ottawa Senators lose all their remaining games. Meanwhile, the Montreal Canadiens are safely in the playoff picture but, they are still playing for position. Montreal currently sits tied with Boston for the division lead, however they have played an extra game, making this a must win for Montreal as well. It is going to be a good all Canadian match up at the Hangar tonight so stay tuned.
Montreal surprised everyone this year. After such a disappointing result last season Montreal bounced back and with the addition of a few key young players Montreal has earned at least one series with home ice advantage and still has a chance at the division crown. Montreal is strong in all facets of the game, up front with players like Max Pacioretty, Thomas Plekanec and the young Brenden Gallagher scoring goals has not been a problem. With the addition of P.K. Subban and Andrei Markhov not only do the Habs get production from the back-end but they are solid in their own zone, especially when you add one of the best goalies in the game today in the mix with Carey Price. Price has been on and off at times this year but remains a goalie you can count on to steal games and make the big saves.
disappointment has been the word of the day surrounding the Jets and their fans since the game in Washington Tuesday night. Needing to win the Jets came out and for much of the game were dominated by the stronger looking Washington Capitals and put their playoff hopes severely in doubt. It is not all lost though for the Winnipeg Jets, with a win over Montreal, Winnipeg can at least put some pressure on a couple other teams and at this time of the year anything can happen. Winnipeg will, as always, lean on goaltender Ondrej Pavelec. Pavelec got some criticism for the way the Washington game started however, without Pavelec this team would not even be in this playoff chase. Ondrej Pavelec has proved that he is a number one goaltender in the NHL, but he’ll have to do it again tonight to keep the Jets alive.
Pay the Price: The only way to beat Carey Price is going to be to get in his kitchen and make life difficult. Get in front of him, make it hard to see and find the rebounds.
Discipline: Stay out of the box, with all of the offensive power Montreal has the Jets can not afford to go on the penalty kill. Stay even and you have a chance.
It ain’t over yet!: Sure the loss Tuesday hurt, and in a few days we may all be able to look back and really wonder what could have been. Right now though, the Jets need to have a short memory and play tonight as they have the past few weeks, play with urgency and go take these last two points.
Ondrej Pavelec (21-19-3) GAA: 2.77 SV% .906
Carey Price (20-13-4) GAA: 2.60 SV% .904
Peluso WPG, (Hand) unknown
Slater WPG, (Upper Body) out
Enstrom WPG, (Mid-Body) out
Bogosian WPG, (concussion) out
Wellwood WPG, (Hand) out
Jokinen WPG, (Lower Body) out
Emelin MTL, (Knee) questionable
Jets give home fans one last thing to cheer about
Jets 3 Canadiens 1