JETBLAST: WINNIPEG @ ANAHEIM

JETBLAST

Winnipeg Jets (21-14-7) at Anaheim Ducks (26-10-6)  4:00 p.m., Honda Center,
TV: TSN3 Radio: TSN 1290
The Ducks have won the first two match ups between these two teams, one in each city, the Jets try to salvage at least one game in the series Sunday night. After an incredible game in Los Angeles in front of a ton of traveling Jets fanse, Winnipeg goes on to the next city for their second game in as many nights. Expect an even bigger Jets contingent in the stands as everyone is there for the real story line, the jersey retirement of Teemu  Selanne. As it was put to me at the Staples Center tonight, Selanne is like a god in Winnipeg, and in Anaheim he is just as big. The Jets and Ducks match up while a legend gets his jersey raised to the rafters, Jets and Ducks, Lets Go!

Ducks

The best team in the Pacific division and the second best team in the league says it all about the Anaheim Ducks. They may have taken Mighty out of the name but the team is living up to the Disney moniker. There is no one much more mighty than Anaheim and they have dominated all season, especially at the Honda Center where they have only lost 5 games. the leaderrs of this team are well known in Ryan Getzlaf and Corey Perry, but their real strength this season comes from their secondary scoring. The addition of Ryan Kesler has been enormous and combined with the emergence of Matt Belesky, Kyle Palmeri, and the rest of the young core of the Ducks, Anaheim is the team to beat in the West. The one place the Ducks do struggle is on special teams. At under 80% on the PK and only 16 % on the power play the Ducks do need to improve in both these aspects if they really want to compete late in the playoffs. So far however the Ducks have overcome and gotten two points far more than not.

Jets

Wow! Saturday night in LA was one of the better games to watch for fans in a long time. After scoring three goals on their first three shots and jumping out to a 3-0 lead the Jets seemed to shut it down and almost let the game get away. After allowing 4 unanswered the Jets tied the game late and won in a shootout. It was not easy, not pretty, and definitely not what the Jets drew up, but two points are two points and the Jets move on to Anaheim looking for another huge two points. Though they were not all great, and their were holes the Jets looked far more like the team fans are used to with the return of Tobi Enstrom, Mark Stuart, and Evander Kane, not to mention the recent return of Zach Bogosian. Many said the Jets had to tred water until their main players returned from injury. Sitting in 7th place I’d say that is exactly what they have done, now they have to find their stroke and continue winning, with a full roster there is no telling what the Jets may be able to do as this season continues.

Keys to the Game

Normally this is the time where I run down what is important to this particular game and how the Jets can be sure to get their W but it seems unnecessary tonight. The focus of this game is on one player and one player only. As a member of the Anaheim Ducks, Selanne became the leader in almost every offensive statistic, goals (457), assists (531), plus minus and the many others. As a member of the original Winnipeg Jets, Selanne set NHL records in rookie goals and became the face of the franchise and the biggest star in Winnipeg to this day. This day means so much to both franchises and their fans, Winnipegers spent thousands of dollars to fly down and be in the building while Ducks fans bought season tickets, and argued over who in the family got to go see the great number 8 raised to the rafters. The only thing that matters on this special night, is the Finnish Flash, Teemu Selanne.

Starting Goalies

Ondrej Pavlec (10-10-5) GAA: 2.47 SV% .905
Frederick Andersen (22-6-5) GAA: 2.32 SV% .916

Injuries

Trouba, WPG, (Undisclosed) out
Clitsome, WPG, (Back) out for season

Brewer, ANA, (Foot) out

Last 10 (W-L-OTL)

Jets: 5-4-1
Ducks: 5-4-1

Prediction

Ducks sweep the season series
Ducks 4 Jets 3

Become an MVP

Become an MVP with Winnipeg Whiteout and never miss a thing.

Diehard Winnipeg sports fan. Agree or disagree with something I wrote? Find me on twitter @seantheoilcan and let me know Go Jets Go!