There’s been a ton of talk around town this week about the chance of the Jets being a “buyer” at the NHL trade deadline. After all, this team is flying high, winning six of the last seven and challenging Dallas for the top of the Central.
Now, let’s remember, Friday, Jan. 13 is upon us, and the deadline is on Friday, March 3. That’s 49 days away, and there’s plenty of hockey to be played. After all, that’s 19 games this team will play before the deadline, including two challenging road trips of five and four games, respectively.
To trade or not to trade: that is the question. And while the challenge facing Kevin Cheveldayoff is hardly Shakespearean, there are certainly two sides to look at.
Side one, simply, is “why?” The team is finally close to healthy and the chemistry appears to be close to fully developed. Mason Appleton will be back before the deadline, and the depth of this team is proving to be one of its greatest assets. Leave a good thing alone.
Side two is, “why not?” The Western Conference, while not wild, is wide open. Teams predicted to be the best, like Calgary, Edmonton, and the Stanley Cup champion Avalanche, are well behind the Jets, and this team has proven to be the equal of the conference’s best teams. This is the time to be all-in, based on the competition and maturity of the Jets’ roster. Every team can use a tweak and extra depth, and that includes Winnipeg.
What’s key for me is that it’s far too early to make any decision. This team’s level of success will be the deciding factor on deadline day.
To trade or not to trade: that is the question.
And the reality is, with the success of the Jets to date, management can’t lose either way.
John Shannon on the Jets: January 11
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