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Harkins quicker, more 'explosive' entering first full year with Moose

by Ryan Dittrick @ryandittrick / WinnipegJets.com

When Jets prospect Jansen Harkins first arrived in Winnipeg two summers ago, he knew that in order to become an effective player at the pro level one day, he needed to become just that much quicker in order to keep pace and push it with the elite skaters of the modern-day game.

Now, entering the 2017-18 season as a member of the Manitoba Moose, he's more than ready to make the jump after the most productive off-season of his career.

"I had a pretty consistent summer with my trainer and skating coaches," Harkins said. "Nowadays, everyone has so much help. I don't think there's any player in pro hockey that isn't trying to get better and faster and quicker. Everyone at this level is a good skater and the difference is to become a great skater, with quickness and explosiveness off the puck.

"Being an offensive guy, that's something that definitely helps your game in setting up chances and just creating some more offence."

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Harkins, Green looking to build on pro experience

Prospects go through final practice before scrimmage Friday at Bell MTS Iceplex

by Mitchell Clinton @MClinton007 / WinnipegJets.com

Jansen Harkins has only had a taste of professional hockey, but the ten combined games he's played at the end of the last two seasons with the Manitoba Moose were enough to show him the importance of Development Camp.

Especially when the very coaches he's trying to impress are on the ice with him.

"Just to see them out on the ice and watching you, it's a bit different than your regular training during the summer," said Harkins. "It puts a little more intensity in you."

The 20-year-old Harkins posted three goals and seven points in those AHL games. This, along with a WHL career that saw his 242 points set a new Prince George Cougars franchise record, earned him an three-year entry-level contract on Apr. 7, 2017.

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Glover motivated heading in 2017-2018 season

2014 third round pick putting last year's shoulder surgeries behind him

by Mitchell Clinton @MClinton007 / WinnipegJets.com

Jack Glover is going into the 2017-18 season a motivated player.

The 21-year-old defenceman, chosen 69th overall in the 2014 NHL Draft, had both shoulders operated on after the 2015-16 season.

"It was a very tough year for me personally - probably the hardest one that I've ever had playing hockey," said Glover. "It's not what happens to you, it's what you do about it. That's the mindset I've taken. The motivation to not have to go through a year like I did last year, that's all I need."

Glover's first surgery came in late March (2016), and the next procedure (on the other shoulder) came in April. He played 13 games with the University of Minnesota Golden Gophers during the 2016-17 season, putting up two assists.

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Connor, Roslovic looking to make impression at development camp

2015 first-round picks gained NHL experience last season

by Mitchell Clinton @MClinton007 / WinnipegJets.com

As first round draft picks in 2015, Kyle Connor and Jack Roslovic are taking part in their third Winnipeg Jets Development Camp this week.

But that doesn't mean they're not trying to make an impression, especially with Jets head coach Paul Maurice and his staff running practices.

"It's a good way to put your name down, another footprint, and any chance you get to put your foot down and get a footprint even more, it's nice," said Roslovic. "They're familiar with us and our game, but once again, every opportunity you get is an opportunity to shine (brighter) in their eyes."

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On-ice testing greets prospects on Day 1 of development camp

All 2017 draft picks in attendance for first skate

by Mitchell Clinton @MClinton007 / WinnipegJets.com

Welcome to Winnipeg.

All eight selections from the 2017 NHL Draft got their first impression of Winnipeg today, as the prospects performed on-ice testing at Bell MTS Iceplex on day one of Development Camp - with fans in the stands watching every stride.

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Kovacevic proud to wear Jets colours

Merrimack College defenceman chosen 74th overall

by Mitchell Clinton @MClinton007 / WinnipegJets.com

CHICAGO, IL - Johnathan Kovacevic is listed at 6'3" and 220 pounds at the age of 19, but he believes he's still got some filling out to do before he's ready to play at the NHL level.

Though if he's being honest, he's not sure the 220 is accurate.

"That might have been from a couple years ago," the newly minted third round pick of the Winnipeg Jets grinned. "If it was a 220, it wasn't a good 220. Right now I'm around 212 or 213."

The smile never left Kovacevic's face following his selection at the United Center. The fact the defenceman was chosen 74th overall by Winnipeg made it even sweeter.

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Cheveldayoff thrilled to select Vesalainen

Finnish power forward's Combine interview stood out to Jets management

by Mitchell Clinton @MClinton007 / WinnipegJets.com

CHICAGO, IL - Kristian Vesalainen impressed the Winnipeg Jets scouts with his on-ice abilities, but one off-ice characteristic the 18-year-old showed moments after being drafted made the staff just as happy.

"What we did with every player that we interviewed at the Combine, we said bring your skates to the (Draft)," said Jets General Manager Kevin Cheveldayoff. The reason being the team's development camp starts two days after the conclusion of the first round.

"I guess he's a good listener because he brought his skates."

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Jets interview 86 prospects throughout Combine week

Focus now turns to two days of prospect fitness testing

by Mitchell Clinton @MClinton007 / WinnipegJets.com

Even though the Winnipeg Jets only have one first round pick in this month's NHL Draft in Chicago - compared to the two first round selections they've had in each of the last two Drafts - Kevin Cheveldayoff and his team kept a full workload at the NHL Combine.

The first prospect interview took place on Monday morning at 8:30 am, and now five days later, a total of 86 aspiring NHLers have been through the Winnipeg Jets suite at KeyBank Center.

"You try to keep it a little light-hearted so that the players aren't that nervous, and try to get a little bit more of their natural sense out of them," said Cheveldayoff. "Some of the interviews are much more laid back than others, but some of them, you will get a little more in-depth. If there's a fine-tuning thing or if something happened in a game you want to get a question answered on. It just depends.

"For us it's a chance to get everybody in one place and get a feel for it."

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Jets agree to terms with Michael Spacek

Spacek was drafted in the fourth round of the 2015 NHL Draft

by Winnipeg Jets PR @WpgJetsPR / Press Release

The Winnipeg Jets announced they have agreed to terms with forward Michael Spacek on a three-year, entry-level contract with an annual average value of $833,300.

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Stanley helps Spitfires to Memorial Cup title

Jets prospect scored once in 4-3 win

by Canadian Press / WinnipegJets.com

WINDSOR, Ont. - Goaltender Michael DiPietro has experienced all three of Windsor's Mastercard Memorial Cup championships.

The first two don't even compare to 2017.

"Truly special, especially being from here," DiPietro said after his team downed the Erie Otters 4-3 on Sunday for the Canadian Hockey League championship.

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