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Winnipeg Jets

How the Jets did this season against their two potential 1st round opponents?

Jets face either the Blues or Ducks in the 1st round. Who would be a better opponent?

Blues score again

With the partying at Portage and Main having abated somewhat we turn our attention to the playoffs.  Yes the playoffs.  Winnipeg officially secured the 2nd wild card spot in the Western Conference and regardless of the outcome of their game against the Flames tomorrow at the MTS Centre cannot change from this position.  But who might they face?

As of right now both the Anaheim Ducks and St. Louis Blues have 107 points with the Ducks holding the tie breaking edge.  This means that if both have the same points once they each play game #82 tomorrow, then Winnipeg will be bounced over to the Pacific Division (Anaheim, Vancouver and Calgary) for the first couple of rounds of the playoffs.

Looking back at the regular season the Jets have faced off against division rival St. Louis five times while they have only played Anaheim three times.  In the three games against the Ducks the Jets went 0-1-1-1 allowing 13 goals against and scoring eight times.  Compare that to the Blues in which Winnipeg went 2-2-0-1 while scoring 10 times and allowing 12 goals against.

Jets and Ducks post whistle

Both teams are tops in their respective divisions for a reason.  They each boast an impressive set of forwards that can cause a headache on the opposition.  Blues have talent like Oshie, Backes, Steen, Taresenko, Stastny whereas the Ducks are hitting you with Getzlaf, Perry, Kesler, Silfverberg.  Both teams have depth which extends to their 4th lines.

Where these formidable opponents may be vulnerable is in net.  Blues head coach Ken Hitchcock had recently declared Brian Elliot as “the guy” before switching back to Jake Allen who now appears to be “the guy” in net for St. Louis.  Over in Anaheim coach Bruce Boudreau still hasn’t named a playoff starter.

The playoffs start on April 15th and there are over 1 million Manitobans who eagerly await puck drop at the MTS Centre regardless of who the Jets opponent will be for game 1.  But we would still like to know which team you would rather face in the 1st round?

Craig Button of TSN spoke with the guys on the Big Show this morning and explained why he thinks a visit to California would suit Winnipeg best as opposed to a trip to Missouri.  Listen to that interview here.