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Winnipeg Jets finish out of playoffs for franchise 7th straight year

Friday, 04.04.2014 / 3:45 PM / News

The Canadian Press

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Winnipeg Jets finish out of playoffs for franchise 7th straight year

WINNIPEG - Coach Paul Maurice sounded a lot like a man who would like to try again next season the day after the Winnipeg Jets were eliminated from the 2014 playoff race.

His future with the Jets is uncertain after taking over on a short-term basis mid-season from Claude Noel.

But the players praised his focus and gave him credit for helping the team improve.

And Maurice says he sees potential and would enjoy helping the team take the next step and continue its growth.

It's been seven years since the Jets, then the Atlanta Thrashers, made their one and only playoff appearance.

With Winnipeg's 4-2 loss to the Pittsburgh Penguins Thursday night, the Jets moved out of reach of either the Dallas Stars or Phoenix Coyotes for the eighth and final playoff spot in the Western Conference.

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That's a really tough thing to play through; when you finally are thrown out there, the game is fast, intense, every single play matters, you've got to find a way to play through that and make smart plays. So it's a huge testament to [Vermette] and some other individuals in our locker room that are putting their own ego, their own wants and needs aside, and are ready for those opportunities when they do come.

— Blackhawks captain Jonathan Toews on teammate Antoine Vermette, who returned from being a healthy scratch in Game 3 to score the double-overtime winner in Game 4