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Reality bites: Winnipeg columnist recognizes Jets are just the Thrashers

Feb 6, 2012, 11:27 AM EDT

Ondrej Pavelec AP

The Winnipeg Jets have fallen on hard times recently. They’ve lost 9 of their last 13 games and sit five points behind Florida in the Southeast Division and after back-to-back miserable performances against the Canadiens and Panthers, reality is starting to settle in on Winnipeg.

The Jets are just the Atlanta Thrashers in new clothing.

Ed Tait of the Winnipeg Free Press sounds off about the struggles of the team and deals the cold, hard truth to fans in Manitoba that their relocated team didn’t develop the magical power to win games just by moving.

You can pick up a franchise and move it 2,075 kilometres north from Atlanta to Winnipeg, you can change the name and jersey colours and set them up in front of a passionate fan base. But you can’t change this — the Thrashers/Jets have come exactly as advertised. They are a goal-starved lot lacking a finisher — especially with Evander Kane out of the lineup.

Reading this after hearing from coach Claude Noel about how he’s doing as well as he can with what he’s got and things are getting awfully gloomy in the ‘Peg.

Crazy thing is, if the Jets do start finding goals and picking up a few more wins, they can win the Southeast Division. The Panthers and Capitals are inconsistent and the Hurricanes and Lightning are having rough seasons.

If they want to show they are dyed in the wool Atlanta though, they’ll continue to fade down the stretch and remind Jets fans what it’s like to have a mediocre hockey team again.

  1. sippindasyzurp - Feb 6, 2012 at 12:40 PM

    To be great you need to suck for a while… Look at Chicago and Pittsburgh… They were horrendous before getting Crosby, Toews etc… You need to be bad to get some decent lottery picks and develop your players accordingly…

    Atlanta messed this up cause they were desperate for players so a guy like Burmistrov who should have been in the minors after being drafted is now struggling to find top 6 ice time.

    People forget that Winnipeg inherited the Thrashers for a reason and now we are seeing why, this process will take time to build a winner, and it will happen because management knows what there doing in Winnipeg.

  2. AlohaMrHand - Feb 6, 2012 at 12:41 PM

    difference is the fans won’t abandon them like they did in Atlanta.Wait,did fans ever show up there in the first place?

  3. greatminnesotasportsmind - Feb 6, 2012 at 1:37 PM

    If you have something that looks like poop and smells like poop in your hand, it’s probably poop.

    In a related story if you have poop in your hand, you have issues.

  4. pavelfitzgerald - Feb 6, 2012 at 1:46 PM

    Winnipeggers knew this, we were however encouraged by the Jets play in December, a large part of it at home. The Jets are a good home team, but on the road their the Thrashers in Jets uniforms. Depth at D but a huge lack of goal scorers

  5. georgiaboy61 - Feb 6, 2012 at 6:33 PM

    As a Blackhawks fan, since you guys up in Winnepeg have given up the ghost on your team’s chances this season, can we have Dustin Byfuglein and Andrew Ladd back for the remainder of the season? We could sure use them!

  6. ikillchicken - Feb 6, 2012 at 8:47 PM

    I don’t know. Seems to me the Jets have had a run of bad luck with injuries to key players. Obviously they’re not a very good team but I think they might just pull out a playoff spot at the last minute if they can get/stay healthy.

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