The Jets completed the four-game home stand with an impressive 3-0-1 record and looking a lot more like the team we grew accustomed to watching last season. Today they practiced at Bell MTS Place before leaving for Vancouver to start a four-game road trip.
All players were present and accounted for including Kristian Vesalainen who was recalled from the Moose on Friday night.
Jets lines, D pairs and goalies:
Extras: Vesalainen, Lemieux
Hellebuyck & Brossoit
Coach Maurice: Was Kristian Vesalainen brought up to prevent his exit to Europe? Would he have preferred to leave Vesalainen in the AHL? Is it fair to say that it will be hard to crack the lineup based on how the 4th line is going? What has he seen from Canucks rookie Elias Pettersson? Do they need to gameplan differently with Petterson in the lineup? Importance of the next block of four games. Does he expect to use Vesalainen in the next four games? As they approach the 1/4 mark of the season how happy is he with the defensive play of the team?
The Jets top pick in 2017 wasn’t too chatty about the report that he could return to Europe to play in his hometown. When asked about it today his response was “I don’t know” and when pressed he indicated he simply didn’t want to talk about it. Coach Maurice was asked about whether Vesalainen was brought up to prevent an exit to Europe “We’re going on the road for 4 in 6, we think very heavy games, so he’s an option for us as a player.”
A follow-up question asked the coach as to whether he has an expectation of Vesalainen being an option for any of the four games on this road trip and the Jets bench boss indicated “I don’t have an expectation of it, either way. I don’t have a game penciled for him or for Brendan. They may both be playing in Calgary but going into Van we’ll start our plan is, unless someone catches the flu here between now and then, we’ll go with our lineup that we finished with.”.
Jets face the Canucks on Monay night with an “AM skate” getting underway at 1:30 PM CST and puck drop at 9 pm.