Apr 26, 2013, 12:03 PM EDT
The Winnipeg Jets won’t be participating in the playoffs for the second straight season — the sixth straight, if you go back to the Atlanta Thrashers days.
For some, that trend is getting annoying.
“I’m sick of going home right now and I think we have lot of guys that are sick of going home right now,” forward Blake Wheeler told the Winnipeg Sun. “I’m going to have a hard time drawing on any positives, when you’re going home and watching the important hockey being played from your couch again.
“That’s going to be tough to swallow.”
Wheeler’s been with the organization since the Atlanta days and knows what he’s missing out on.
He qualified for the playoffs in each of his first two seasons in the NHL — with Boston — and isn’t alone in postseason experience.
In short, the Jets are reaching a point where having great fans and playing an entertaining style simply isn’t enough anymore.
The team struggled mightily in some key areas (25th in goals against, 23rd on the penalty kill, 22nd in faceoff percentage), which essentially kept it out of a playoff spot.
All eight playoff teams in the East finished with a positive goals for/goals against differential.
Winnipeg finished minus-16.
Wheeler tried to stay positive in his outlook for the future, but acknowledged things need to improve.
“Hopefully, we can all look in the mirror and make a change,” he explained. “I think we’re on the right path.
“But ninth-place is a first-class ticket home again.”
- Could Lundqvist start Saturday for the Rangers? 5
- Five big games to watch this weekend 6
- Video: Kessel, Booth get into altercation at Leafs practice 32
- Playoff watch — what the bubble teams need to do 28
- After Howard fails to ‘bounce back,’ Mrazek to receive ‘opportunity’ 35
- Bruins can’t hold Ducks off, suffer sixth loss in a row 32
- Ticket punched: Rangers become first team to clinch 2015 playoff berth 14
- Coyotes ‘win’ against Sabres in OT 54
- Marchand: If Bruins miss playoffs, ‘this is going to be a much different group next year’ 20
- Is Lecavalier offering to retire early to facilitate trade out of Philly? 28
- Dreger: ‘In Kessel’s case, I firmly believe he’s going to be traded’ (73)
- Red Wings beat Blues in OT, but should winning goal count? (56)
- Tank-worthy? Connor McDavid finishes OHL season with 120 points in 47 games (56)
- Coyotes ‘win’ against Sabres in OT (54)
- Report: No fine or suspension for Tyler Toffoli’s hit on Alex Burrows (51)