Jets Too Silent at Trade Deadline

Winnipeg Jets fans should remember why their team left in the first place in 1996.

It was because the management couldn't put together a team that could compete on a regular basis. 

They wouldn't put together the team.

The didn't put together the team.

If Winnipeg wants to keep their Jets again, they need to be more aggressive in their wheeling and dealing.

First off, the Jets were in need of a scoring forward.  They ended up picking up Mike Santorelli – a former 20 goal scorer in 2010-11 with the Florida Panthers – off waivers.

Santorelli isn't exactly the gem of the trade deadline deals.  He managed only 11 points in 60 games last season and only three points in 24 games before finding himself playing time with the AHL's San Antonio Rampage.

Second and final move of the day was putting Nik Antropov on the injured reserve for two weeks or so.

To say I'm disappointed and upset that the Jets didn't make any kind of deal would be an understatement.

It is frustrating to say the least that the Jets, in the midst of a four game losing streak, did not think to make a move to wake some players up.

The Jets put an uninspired Antropov on the IR and moved an equally uninispired Dustin Byfuglien onto the right win with Andrew Ladd and Bryan Little. 

That is scary and disappointing.

It is true Byfuglien is one of the most inconsistent defensemen defensively, but one of the highest scoring blueliner over the last two and a few seasons.

The actual truth of the matter is that Byfuglien is not a forward and should not be considered for being deep in the zone or in front of the net unless it is a power play – circa against Vancouver Canucks in the 2010 playoffs.

As a forward with the Chicago Blackhawks, Big Buff had 101 points in 226 games, while he has had 127 points in  180 games in his last three seasons on defense.

For the Jets, paying Byfuglien $5.75 million for the next two years and $6 million the year after isn't worth him scoring only 30-40 points as a forward versus 50-60 points as a defenseman, no matter how liable he is defensively.

Which brings us to the next problem, what are the Jets going to do exactly with 2012 first round pick Jacob Trouba?

Trouba decided to forego continuing his NCAA hockey career at Michigan to turn pro at only 19.

Apparently Jets fans and Twitter think Trouba is the saviour of the Jets season.

I'm sorry – but he is not.

Trouba, if anything, needs time in the AHL before becoming a full time defenseman with the Jets, which I am more than sure he will become.

Finishing the season in the AHL will help his gradual development.  

For me, going straight to the NHL is more in the way of the Atlanta Thrashers – not the Winnipeg Jets.

And I'm sick and tired of still being the Thrashers and possibly making the same mistakes they did.

With Ron Hainsey's contract all but going to be up and not resigned (which would be a smart move positionally and financially), Trouba is the next best asset to put into the Jets lineup.

For now though, the AHL would be the best for a proper development.

Lastly, the Jets don't seem to be too aggressive.  It has been almost two seasons and the Jets have yet to make a significant trade or signing.

Olli Jokinen's two year contract this summer at $4.5 million per season has been Kevin Cheveldayoff's biggest achievement so far.

However, this team is still the former Thrasher core along with many different bits and pieces put in here and there, including many second or third liners in the likes of Antti Miettinen, Kyle Wellwood, Eric Tangradi, James Wright, Anthony Peluso, and now Mike Santorelli.

I had a co-worker say that it seems the Manitoba Moose seemed to want to win more when they were in the town in the AHL than the current tenants of the MTS Centre.

It has to be understood that True North and Jets management are taking a very patient approach to how they are building this team, but right now they do not have the core that they need and many tweaks need to be made. 

The Jets missed the memo that the trade deadline was the time to do that.

If the 5-2 loss to the New York Islanders Tuesday night showed anything of the Jets it was that they seemed to not matter what the outcome is.

To say it bluntly – the Jets look like they don't care what the score is, they just want to make money – not win hockey games.

Harsh, granted, but from a fan's perspective, it is evident in their body language and their play.

Time for the Jets to change up the lineup or give Claude Noel walking papers because this season is going the same way that last season did.