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Thomas' Five Storylines - PHI @ WPG

Jets will play five of their next six games at Bell MTS Place

by Jamie Thomas @JamieThomasTV / Winnipeg Jets


One thing you can count on this season is the Jets bouncing back from a loss of any kind. Winnipeg is 10-2 following a setback this season and they are coming off a 5-2 defeat at the hands of the Red Wings in Detroit at Little Caesars Arena on Thursday night.

"The other night is a possibility every night in grinding games for us," said Paul Maurice following Saturday's practice after a scheduled day off on Friday.

"I didn't mind actually the legs or the effort, our hands were way off it and you are looking at times for the group tell. If it's one guy, one guy has a tough night. If your whole group isn't right, there's something amiss. So we needed the rest and we got back to fast today."


If you look at the Jets scoring race, the top three point producers reside on one line with Mark Scheifele (32), Patrik Laine (30) and Kyle Connor (29) leading the way. Scheifele and Connor come into this afternoon's game on five game point streaks and Laine leads the club in assists.


For the second consecutive season, David Gustafsson will represent Sweden at the World Junior tournament which will be held in the Czech Republic. The 19-year-old is being loaned to the Swedish team by the Jets who believe this is best for his development especially since he has been playing limited minutes and has been a healthy scratch with the addition of Nick Shore.

"This is some really high level hockey, albeit amateur but the best players in the world," said Maurice.

"But it will be a great test for him, he will improve in that time."


The Flyers have missed the postseason four times in the past seven seasons and that meant change was needed in Philadelphia. In comes new head coach Alain Vigneault and for the first time in a long time the Flyers are getting consistent goaltending with Carter Hart taking part of his first full NHL season. But the Flyers offer a couple other challenges as well on a night to night basis.

"Their backend is as active in the offensive zone as other team out there," said Maurice.

"They have a dynamic backend and they have some skilled and also matured forward group, they can make plays. The overall package I think the Philadelphia Flyers play a much faster game." 


Hayes returns to Winnipeg for the first time since the Jets traded his rights to the Flyers in the off-season in exchange for a 2019 fifth round pick in the draft. Hayes then went and signed a 7-year, 50 million dollar contract with Philadelphia to avoid becoming a free agent. Hayes is coming off a career year of 55 points (19 goals, 36 assists) after scoring a personal-best 25 goals in 2017-18.

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