Game 20: Thrashers Visit Flames… wait..

The Jets continue their road trip tonight in Calgary, facing off against the other relocated Atlanta franchise. Coming off their 6-3 victory Monday in Vancouver, the high flying Jets will look to beat “Big Save” Dave Rittich and the Flames. Rittich is 7-1 this season with a sub 2 GAA and a .931 sv%, he has stepped in fine for a struggling Mike Smith. Maybe some hope for stability in Calgary. Hopefully not tonight though.

Patrik Laine was able to light the lamp twice at 5v5 Monday, (plus an ENG for his second hatty of the season) we will be watching and hoping he is able to maintain his solid play with Connor and Little as his linemates. And maybe tonight the Jets as a unit will be able to put together a full 60 minutes of hockey.

The Jets will be looking to draw penalties tonight, as the Flames are in the bottom third of the league on the PK, while the Jets hold the #1 powerplay in the league. As long as they don’t take any ill advised shin shots, of course.

In the midst of these 4 games in 6 days, I believe coach Maurice mentioned he would like to roll four lines as much as possible. He should do that no matter the situation, but it’s a positive thought. He didn’t stand quite true to that on Monday, as Petan and Roslovic each had under 9 minutes, Perreault had 11+ but he gets PP time. Obviously the score effects are real, and situations exist (PP/PK time spent) but the Jets really need to round out the lineup, and spread some minutes out. If the 4th line continues to produce chances, those chances will lead to goals. The more opportunities they get, the better. Plus it doesn’t hurt to cut back Wheeler’s ice time slightly, I’m talking about 1-2 minutes less ice time. That’s not very significant, especially since the fourth line will produce if given a shot. Maurice needs to try to save the legs for later in the season/playoff time. Also, Free Niku.

The lines are expected to remain the same, and Hellebuyck is expected to start. I also expect Brossoit to start either Friday or Saturday.

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