Sportsnet: Elliotte Friedman and Jeff Marek on 32 Thoughts: The Podcast – Tin Foil Hats, on the Winnipeg Jets core, the Montreal Canadiens and Pierre-Luc Dubois.
** NHLRumors.com transcription
Marek: “Winnipeg Jets. Tough loss Saturday against the Los Angeles Kings, 4-1 is the final. I want to get Lizzotte and Morrissey in a couple seconds, but you talked about this Saturday on Hockey Night, man that is a really difficult loss for Winnipeg, but, your thoughts on the future of the Winnipeg Jets core.
Friedman: “I saw tweets about Rick Bowness’s quotes after the game and then we showed them at the end of the show and oftentimes I think when you read something and you see something, they can come across two different ways, Jeff.
Honestly, when I read them, I said, ‘wow, that’s pretty harsh.’ but when I saw them, I was think, ‘nah, you know what, he’s delivering them really calmly, very matter of factly about losing to the Kings.’
- Bowness: “Top guys, they got to score. We need some goals from them. That’s just stating the obvious … fight through it. fight through it. Whatever they throw at you, fight through it”
Look, we talked about Keefe and his frustration with the Maple Leafs, Bowness has been pretty clear about his frustration with the Jets and I should mention, it was Scott Billeck he had the exchange with last week about motivation, it wasn’t Sean Reynolds, I misread Sean’s tweet. I would like to blame Sean Reynolds for this mistake because that’s what I do, I voice blame on other people, but it wasn’t Sean’s fault, I misread his text.”
Marek: “Fingers are for pointing.”
Friedman: “Fingers are for pointing. Very good Jeff.
But, do you not get the sense here that the Jets core that had a good run together and had a lot of promise, we’re just getting to the end of it. And part of it is contracts.
(Pierre-Luc) Dubois has a year left and we all know how he feels. (Blake) Wheeler’s got a year left. (Mark) Schefiele’s got a year left. Sometimes it’s a combination of the group had a run and they represented the Jets extremely well, but sometimes it comes to the end because of your record. Sometimes it comes to the end because of the contracts.
Paul Maurice, he really protected that group. Not so much Dubois because Dubois came later, but Wheeler, Schefiele. He basically said these are the guys I trust. These are the guys I like the tone they set. I love how committed they are to doing work. Like, they are my guys.
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With Bowness, it certainly doesn’t come across that way. That’s one of the reasons that Bowness was brought in, was to change the way that the structure was and challenge players a little bit more.
And I just look at this, and the way this year is going, You and I have talked about it, they keep pulling away and then they let everybody back in. They pull away and they let everybody back in. Well now, they’ve kind of let everybody back in again, and I just wonder if we’re seeing the end of this group.
I think the Jets have talked to the Canadiens on and off about Dubois. Is there some way, we know that Dubois’ going to end up there 95 percent? Is there some way we make a deal so the Canadiens get him earlier, we get something we want. I think they’ve talked about that but they haven’t been able to make the deal.
With Schefiele, you’ve got to basically decide, are you re-signing him or is he re-signing or do you move him somewhere else?
Like I said, those guys represented Winnipeg hard. They talked up Winnipeg when a lot of people were unsure. Do we really want to go there? We’ve talked about how Cheveldayoff has a tough job than a lot of other GMs because there’s not place that has less of a pool of players available to it than the Jets do.
I’m looking at this and saying, ‘boy, this could be an end of an era with the Jets.’
Marek: “Yes, and then I think part of the conversation revolves around when was the beginning of the end? This is going to take a lot more thinking from me, but my knee-jerk is, it began when Dustin Byfuglien left. And that it was marching towards this eventually. All teams, the core of every team so of marches to its own demise at some point, I just think the beginning of the end was losing Dustin Byfuglien.
Friedman: “I agree with that.”
Marek: “And now here was are and we’re at the point where you do have to start to make the decisions and try and get something to build this team back up because as we have talked about, it’s challenging to populate a roster with elite level players if you’re Kevin Cheveldayoff. ”
Friedman: “You know I got to tell you something Jeff, I agree with you on that. Byfuglien seems to me the kind of guy that you know there’s always, when you go to work and it’s really serious all the time, Byfuglien seems to me the kind of guy, he doesn’t do everything the way everybody else does it, but he gets there it’s hilarious. ‘
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Marek: “Ya, and we’ve had a lot of people, just in our own example, we’ve had a lot of people we’ve worked with that have made it really fun to come to work. I think, how many times do we sit in the green room and laugh with Doug MacLean or with Brian Burke or whomever?
You need that I think in every workplace. I know it’s your job and your obligation to go to work, you’re being paid and that’s the agreement, but there are just some people who make it fun to go to work and I think that’s really valuable.