Skip to main content

Jets hoping lineup changes spark offense vs. Flames

by Patrick Williams

FLAMES (3-3-0) at JETS (1-3-0)


WINNIPEG -- One goal in the past three games for the Winnipeg Jets means that coach Paul Maurice is shuffling his forward lines five games into the season when the Jets play the Calgary Flames at MTS Centre on Sunday.

Injuries and early-season attempts at line chemistry have also led Calgary coach Bob Hartley to tinker with his lineup when the Flames end a six-game road trip.

After the game Sunday, the Flames will have opened the season with six of their first seven games on the road, and a win against the Jets would make it a 4-2-0 journey.

"It's the last game of a big road trip," Hartley said. "I know we're demanding a lot, but to get another big [win] would be nice."

Hartley will re-insert right wing Devin Setoguchi, a healthy scratch in a 3-2 loss at the Columbus Blue Jackets on Friday, back into the lineup. Center Matt Stajan will move from the fourth line to play with Setoguchi and left wing Curtis Glencross.

Hartley made rookie Johnny Gaudreau a healthy scratch Friday, something that he explained was a not a punitive move. Gaudreau will play right wing on a line with left wing Mason Raymond and center Mikael Backlund. Center Josh Jooris (upper body), who scored his first NHL goal Friday in his NHL debut, was injured in the game and will not dress for the Flames.

"It's just a matter of creating balance, looking at the other team's lineup," Hartley said of his line changes.

Opponents have shut out the Jets in two of their past three games after a 6-2 season-opening win at the Arizona Coyotes on Oct. 9.

Maurice will move right wing Dustin Byfuglien to replace Michael Frolik on a line with center Bryan Little and left wing Andrew Ladd. Mathieu Perreault will shift from center to the left side of a new line with center Mark Scheifele and right wing Blake Wheeler.

Rookie Adam Lowry will shift from left wing to center on the third line, joining former Flame TJ Galiardi and Frolik.

Amid all of the changes, Maurice will be cautioning his forwards to avoid trying to do too much and take too many chances in an attempt to spur offensive production.

"That's just the surest way to do less," Maurice said.

Wheeler, who led Winnipeg in scoring last season, believes that re-directing the Jets' frustration will be their challenge against the Flames.

"We need to be a little bit more desperate," Wheeler said. "It's still early in the season, but it's getting to the point where we've got to get a win.

"We've scored one goal in three games, so [we are] going to be frustrated. It's human nature. It's not so much about not being frustrated. It's just how do you channel that into something positive and go out there and use it to kind of light a fire under you?"

Goalie Jonas Hiller will start for the Flames and Ondrej Pavelec for the Jets.

Here are the projected lineups:


Joe Colborne - Sean Monahan - Jiri Hudler

Mason Raymond - Mikael Backlund - Johnny Gaudreau

Curtis Glencross - Matt Stajan - Devin Setoguchi

Brandon Bollig - Lance Bouma- Paul Byron

Mark Giordano - TJ Brodie

Kris Russell - Dennis Wideman

Ladislav Smid - Raphael Diaz

Jonas Hiller

Karri Ramo

Scratched: Brian McGrattan

Injured: Sam Bennett (shoulder surgery), Deryk Engelland (lower body), David Jones (lower body), Josh Jooris (upper body), Corey Potter (shoulder surgery)


Andrew Ladd - Bryan Little - Dustin Byfuglien

Mathieu Perreault - Mark Scheifele - Blake Wheeler

TJ Galiardi - Adam Lowry - Michael Frolik

Chris Thorburn - Jim Slater - Anthony Peluso

Tobias Enstrom - Zach Bogosian

Mark Stuart - Jacob Trouba

Adam Pardy - Paul Postma

Ondrej Pavelec

Michael Hutchinson

Scratched: Grant Clitsome, Matt Halischuk

Injured: Evander Kane (knee)

Status report: Engelland and Jones, who are out with lower-body injuries, skated Sunday but will not play against Winnipeg ... McGrattan will also be a scratch ... Clitsome has yet to dress for a game this season.

Who's hot: Hiller will make his first start since a 50-save performance in a win against the Chicago Blackhawks last Wednesday ... Pavelec has started this season with a 2.22 goals-against average and a .919 save percentage.

View More

The NHL uses cookies, web beacons, and other similar technologies. By using NHL websites or other online services, you consent to the practices described in our Privacy Policy and Terms of Service, including our Cookie Policy.