The Jets have heard all the negative talk surrounding their play in the weeks leading into the playoffs.

Hey there, time traveller!
This article was published 18/5/2021 (248 days ago), so information in it may no longer be current.

The Jets have heard all the negative talk surrounding their play in the weeks leading into the playoffs.

Winnipeg hasn't exactly been playing its best hockey, with just three wins in their final 12 games. They've also lost six in a row to the Edmonton Oilers, the team they'll be up against in the opening round of the Stanley Cup playoffs, with Game 1 at Rogers Place Wednesday night.

So, what do they have to say to the people who say they don't have a chance?

"I mean, I think you look at our team, the way it's built, the kind of players that we have on our team, from the guys on the first line to the guys on the fourth line, to the guys that are not even playing, I think we got talent and heart and character and guys that play the right way up and down our lineup," Andrew Copp said. "Just counting us out of the series is a little insulting to me."

Mathieu Perreault took the suggestion a different way. He said the outside noise is fine, that fans can think what they will, but what he's seen inside the locker room shows a team hungry to prove to themselves that they're on the right track to success.

"We know what we can do. I think we loved the way we played our last games there at the end of the season, where everything we do is towards the team success," Perreault said. "There's no more my own stats going around, it's all about the team and in the playoffs that's what you need. I can see our team go out and if everybody plays that way then we have a chance against anybody."

D PAIRINGS SET: After running the same defensive pairings in practice Sunday and Monday, the Jets had a different look to their blue line Tuesday.

The top pairing of Josh Morrissey and Dylan DeMelo remained intact, as did the second group made up of Neal Pionk and Derek Forbort. It was the third pairing that had the change, with Tucker Poolman being inserted into the lineup alongside Logan Stanley. That leaves Jordie Benn as the odd man out for Wednesday's Game 1.

Maurice was asked earlier in the week what went into deciding his third pairing. It's been a bit of a revolving door the last few games, and has included the likes of Ville Heinola, who is also set to be a healthy scratch.

"The first will be health, where we think we’re at, and that’s probably the big one. If everybody is healthy, we’ll have one decision to make," Maurice said. "If we have to hold a guy a game, we’ll let the first game be played and we’ll make a decision after that. Up to Game 1 it will be health, then after Game 1 it’ll be performance."

It's clear whatever was ailing Poolman is no longer an issue. Poolman missed the last three games owing to injury but had been a full participant in practice this week. Benn will miss his fourth game since being acquired by the Jets at the trade deadline.

INJURY UPDATE: All signs suggest that Pierre-Luc Dubois will be ruled out. The Jets centre, who also plays wing, has yet to practice after taking a shot to the head.

Dubois joins Nikolaj Ehlers as players whom are doubtful for Game 1. But Maurice did say they would be travelling with the team.

jeff.hamilton@freepress.mb.ca

twitter: @jeffkhamilton

Jeff Hamilton

Jeff Hamilton
Multimedia producer

After a slew of injuries playing hockey that included breaks to the wrist, arm, and collar bone; a tear of the medial collateral ligament in both knees; as well as a collapsed lung, Jeff figured it was a good idea to take his interest in sports off the ice and in to the classroom.