Tag:Winnipeg Jets
Posted on: August 2, 2011 10:09 am

Daily Skate: Anti-military backlash for Jets logo

By Brian Stubits

WHAT'S IN A LOGO? Sure, there has been a lot of discussion about the Jets' new logo, but anger? Yes, that too. Some anti-war activists in Canada are very upset at the use of the old Canadian Air Force emblem to serve as the basis for the Jets logo. We are talking about the aesthetic appeal here, but the symbolic one. Here's an example: Tyler Shipley's take on the militarism of the logo. I just don't get it. It's a gesture of appreciation to honor the troops of the country, not an encouragement of war acts. I know I'm not the only one that thinks this anger is way off base. The team is named the Jets, so it would stand to reason the logo might feature, oh I don't know, a Jet! Moreover Winnipeg has a history with the air force, so it's appropriate. It isn't about approving of wars, it's about honoring the people that have sacrificed their lives in the name of their country. How can that be criticized?

MUELLER RETURNS: Out since suffering a concussion in early April of 2010, Avalanche winger Peter Mueller returned to the ice on Monday in Colorado. It's part of his long recovery that hopes to have him back by the start of training camp in September. Mueller had a very promising rookie season with the Coyotes in 2007-08 when he scored 22 goals with 32 assists, but has struggled to match those numbers since. But in his short stint with the Avs before the injury, he did have nine goals and 11 assists in just 15 games. Hopefully he is over his concussion symptoms and can find his groove again on the ice, the Avs could certainly use it.

ABDELKADER'S BUSY SUMMER: He has been to weddings, going back and forth between his Michigan home of Muskegon and Detroit, taking trips and having one flight with the famous U.S. Navy Blue Angels. Still, he managed to work in a little time volunteering at the Grand Rapids Griffins youth camp. Himself a former Griffins player, Abdelkader made it three consecutive years heading out to help teach the youngsters to skate, stick-handle and more. Sure beats a lot of other ways a guy could spend his summer.

For more hockey news, rumors and analysis, follow @cbssportsnhl and @BrianStubitsNHL on Twitter.

Posted on: August 1, 2011 8:43 am

Daily Skate: Islanders big day

By: Adam Gretz

IT'S VOTE DAY FOR THE Islanders It's August 1 and that means it's a huge day for the future of the New York Islanders franchise. Today is the day Nassau County residents will vote on whether or not to pass a referendum that would fund a new arena for the storied franchise. Their two closest rivals, the Rangers and Devils, have already spoken out in favor of the deal, and the Islanders PR blitz has been on for quite a while. Chris Botta at Islanders Point Blank reviews the all of the pluses and minuses of everything that's gone on, and offers a prediction on what will happen when the polls close at 9 PM.

TAMPA BAY'S 'BE THE TICKET' PROMOTION The Tampa Bay Lightning are running a Facebook promotion that will give their fans an opportunity to have their face on a ticket stub for a game during the 2010-11 season. The folks at Raw Charge have some thoughts on the promotion, and if you're a Lightning fan that wants to have the opportunity to have your mug on a ticket stub, here's where to go.

MORE ON WEBER'S ARBITRATION So far this summer every potential arbitration case has been avoided due to the team and player coming to an agreement. In the case of Shea Weber, that doesn't appear as if it's going to happen, so both sides are preparing for Tuesday's hearing. Is Weber, the Predators' All-Star level defenseman, only looking for a one-year deal instead of two? That's what Dirk Hoag at On The Forecheck looks at after a since-deleted Tweet from TSN's Ryan Rishaug suggested Weber was only looking for a one-year deal.

WINNIPEG: THE HOCKEY SONG And now for something completely random, and perhaps even a little ridiciulous, here's a gentlemen that goes by the name of Sugar Free Leonard welcoming the return of the Winnipeg Jets through song. We give him credit for putting himself out there. Video via Puck Daddy:

For more hockey news, rumors and analysis, follow @cbssportsnhl and @agretz on Twitter.

Posted on: July 31, 2011 7:20 pm
Edited on: July 31, 2011 7:23 pm

Where will Nikolay Zherdev land?

ZherdevBy: Adam Gretz

Whenever Nikolay Zherdev is the subject of discussion it's inevitable that the word enigma is going to get thrown around. The 26-year-old winger oozes talent and seemingly untapped potential, but has been frustrating teams and coaches since his NHL debut during the 2003-04 season. He remains unsigned as the calender is set to flip over to August, and is easily the biggest boom-or-bust player still waiting for a chance.

It's not yet known whether that chance will come with an NHL team or somewhere in Russia.

The folks over at Broad Street Hockey translated a Russian interview with Zherdev late last week where he talked about his potential landing spots (he also shared his critical feelings for his former general manager and coach), including his interest in playing for the Winnipeg Jets, as well as a possible jump to the KHL (which is something that, for some reason, seems like it would have already happened by now).

Somebody is going to take a chance on the talented winger because there's still too much offensive ability and upside to ingnore, and at 26, he's not exactly over-the-hill or on what would be the downside of his career. It can be too tempting to pass up, even if he can be frustrating in the defensive end of the ice and maddeningly inconsistent.

At this point Zherdev is what he is -- a talented, one-dimensional offensive threat that can score goals when put into the right situations. And that can be a useful asset to a team like Winnipeg that was 20th in goals per game last season, and has added nothing more than depth players this summer, while also buying low on Eric Fehr.

Zherdev scored more goals (16) with the Flyers last season than any remaining free agent on the open market (that's excluding Anaheim-or-bust Teemu Selanne), and did so by playing in just 56 games, which is a 23-goal pace over an 82 game season. That's nearly identical to what he did over the prior two seasons as a member of the Columbus Blue Jackets and New York Rangers.

When asking whether or not the Jets should be the team to pursue Zherdev, Drew Mindell at Illegal Curve concluded the answer should be a rather easy yes, provided it's only a low-risk one-year deal. And that seems fair. No NHL team should be willing to hand out a multi-year contract at this point because there's just too much uncertainty as to what you're going to get, and a team like the Jets seems to be a match in terms of having a need for some sort of additional offensive firepower. Even if it does carry some risk.

Photo: Getty Images

For more hockey news, rumors and analysis, follow @cbssportsnhl and @agretz on Twitter.

Posted on: July 25, 2011 10:32 am
Edited on: July 25, 2011 3:13 pm

Daily Skate: Jets donate to Air Force; Sir Chara

By Brian Stubits

CO-PILOTS: When the Winnipeg Jets released their long-awaited new logo, it was met with plenty of mixed reactions with a lot of people pointing out how similar the design is to the Canadian Air Force's design. Turns out, that was part of the plan. The CBC shared that the Jets and the Air Force struck a partnership in which the Jets will donate $1 million over 10 years to Air Force family charities.

JUST CALL HIM SIR: Zdeno Chara got not one, but two days with the Stanley Cup when his turn came. Spending the weekend back in his home country of Slovakia, Chara was very busy signing autographs, snapping photos, arm wrestling (where he lies down) and even being knighted. What I want to know is if they could find armor big enough for him to fit in. After visiting the Czech Republic (Thomas Kaberle and David Krejci) Slovakia and Finland (with Tuukka Rask), the Cup comes back to North America for some visits in Ontario.

OH, OVIE: Alex Ovechkin didn't exactly get knighted in his recent trip back to Russia, he was awarded in another way. The Russian Machine Never Breaks has photos of Ovechkin being feted at halftime of a soccer match where he was bestowed with the traditional Dagestani burka and papakha, which is a wool hat. Just take a look at the pictures. Ovechkin looks more like Cher from the 70s than anything else. Nonetheless, it's an honor for the Capitals star.

GETTING OUT THE VOTE: As we have shared, August 1 will be a monumental day in New York Islanders history as that's when the proposal for a new arena goes to the public for vote. If the vote passes, the team will stick on Long Island, if it fails then the relocation talk will get real. Chris Botta of Islanders Point Blank shares what some displaced Islanders fans are doing to contribute to the effort, starting chain emails encouraging people to go out and vote yes.

For more hockey news, rumors and analysis, follow @cbssportsnhl and @BrianStubitsNHL on Twitter.

Posted on: July 23, 2011 10:27 am
Edited on: July 23, 2011 1:59 pm

Daily Skate: Gorges avoids arbitration

By Adam Gretz

GORGES RE-SIGNS WITH MONTREAL: One-by-one players that were scheduled for arbitration hearings are finding ways to come to an agreement with their team before having to go through the arbitration process. The latest player to come to an agreement was Josh Gorges, who signed a one-year contract with the Montreal Canadiens on Friday night. According to TSN's Darren Dreger, the deal is worth $2.5 million. Gorges was limited to just 36 games last season because of injury, and scored one goal to go with six assists. Offense isn't a large part of his game, as he's one of Montreal's top shutdown defensemen. He was scheduled for an arbitration hearing on July 28.

BOOGAARD CHARGED: Aaron Boogaard, the brother of former NHL enforcer Derek Boogaard, was charged on Friday for the unlawful distribution of a controlled substance. He's also facing charges for interferring with the scene of his brother's death by allegedly flushing a drug stash down the toilet before police could arrive to the scene.

KANE'S NUMBER DEBATE: There's a debate raging in Winnipeg as to whether Evander Kane should continue to wear Bobby Hull's No. 9. Hull, of course, was a tremendous player for the original Winnipeg franchise during its WHA days, where the number was retired. That team currently plays its games in Phoenix, while the current Jets franchise carries the history of the Atlanta Thrashers, which did not retire the number. Arctic Ice Hockey is asking Jets fans to vote on whether Kane should change numbers, while the young forward plans on asking Hull for permission to continue to wear the number he's worn for most of his young career.

NABOKOV TO RETURN? James Mirtle of the Globe and Mail reported on Friday that Evgeni Nabokov is planning on making a return to the NHL for the 2011-12 season. The question, however, is with which team? The easiest guess right now might be the New York Islanders. The goaltender signed a deal in Russia before last season and then decided to make a return to the NHL in January. He signed a contract with the Detroit Red Wings but had to pass through waivers before he could officially join the team. The Islanders, in need of goaltending help because of a rash of injuries at the position, claimed Nabokov, who then refused to report to the team. He never played a game for the Islanders. Nabokov suiting up for New York would certainly be weird given last year's events, but it's still not as weird as the possibility of Alexei Yashin returning.

For more hockey news, rumors and analysis, follow @cbssportsnhl and @agretz on Twitter.

Posted on: July 22, 2011 5:18 pm
Edited on: July 23, 2011 10:48 am

Winnipeg Jets unveil new logo

By Adam Gretz

We've been waiting for a while now to get a look at the new logo for the Winnipeg Jets, and on Friday afternoon the club unveiled its primary and secondary logos, with the jersey unveiling to come at a later date. The timing of the announcement was a bit curious (late on a Friday afternoon?), but here's a look at what the Jets will look like in their return to the NHL.


It's quite a bit different from the look the original Jets franchise had before its move, but I kind of like it, especially the one on the left.

The look was inspired by the Royal Canadian Air Force logo and also includes the Maple Leaf that appears on the Canadian flag.

Said Mark Chipman, the chairman and governor of True North Sports & Entertainment, in a statement released by the team, “True North Sports & Entertainment felt it was important for the new Winnipeg Jets to develop a strong new identity. We felt it was important to authenticate the name Jets and we believe the new logo does that through its connection to our country’s remarkable Air Force heritage, including the rich history and relationship that our city and province have enjoyed with the Canadian Forces.”

Photo: jets.nhl.com

For more hockey news, rumors and analysis, follow @cbssportsnhl and @agretz on Twitter.

Category: NHL
Posted on: July 18, 2011 7:29 pm
Edited on: July 18, 2011 7:46 pm

Jets re-sign Wheeler to two-year extension

By Brian Stubits

The Winnipeg Jets have re-signed Blake Wheeler to a two-year contract. Darren Dreger of TSN says the deal is worth $2.45 million the first season, $2.65 million the second, meaning an average salary cap hit of $2.55 million.

With the signing, congratulations are in order for the Jets as they climb over the salary floor. Plus, they still have a restricted free agent in Zach Bogosian to get under contract. Now only the Coyotes, Avalanche, Predators and Islanders are below the floor.

Split between Boston and Atlanta last season, Wheeler scored 18 goals with 26 assists in 81 games. It was the third time in his three NHL seasons that he played in 81 games or more. He was sent from the Bruins to the Thrashers in a trade that netted the B's Rich Peverley. Wheeler's best season came as a rookie when he scored 21 goals.

Wheeler plays a role as a top-six forward for the Jets, seeing plenty of burn with top-line guys Andrew Ladd and Nik Antropov.

Wheeler has received more than his fair share of criticism, especially coming out of his old stomping grounds in Beantown. But it's important to remember he's still just 24 and has only three full seasons under his belt in the NHL. He seemed to find a good situation once he hit Atlanta, posting 17 points in 23 games after the trade. He could be in store for a very nice season playing a big role in Winnipeg.

Photo: Getty Images

For more hockey news, rumors and analysis, follow @cbssportsnhl and @BrianStubitsNHL on Twitter.

Posted on: July 18, 2011 11:10 am
Edited on: July 18, 2011 2:39 pm

Some Thrashers fans having ticket refund issues

thrashersfansBy: Adam Gretz

There are a number of reasons as to why hockey ultimately failed in Atlanta for a second time.

For one, the team was never a consistent contender, recording just two winning seasons in 11 years, with only one trip to the playoffs (and never winning a postseason game; they were swept in four games in their only appearance). Along with that, just about every star player the team ever had was eventually traded for one reason or another. It's difficult to build a following with a new fan base when the team never wins and struggles to keep its best players.

Those two issues can be traced back to a much larger issue that plagued the organization for much of its existence: ownership. And it doesn't seem to be getting any better even after the team is gone (and, honestly, why would it?).

According to a report from WSBTV in Atlanta over the weekend, some Thrashers fans were having a difficult time getting refunds on their season tickets, which naturally won't be good this upcoming season since the team now calls Winnipeg its home.  Consumer reporter Jim Strickland spoke to one Thrashers fan, Brad Lyons, who was getting "the runaround" in attempting to get his refund.

 From WSBTV:
Strickland discovered gauging the scope of the problem was a hassle too."It's just been one excuse after another. Where's my money at? Where's my refund? It's been well over a month from the time it was guaranteed to be sent back to me," complained fan Brad Lyons. Strickland called Lyons' ticket representative. James Desmond refused comment and hung up the phone. Strickland called back several times and got voicemail from several team officials."I was told, others have had this problem," said Lyons. A second fan told Strickland that he's still waiting for $3,700. Lyons owed less than $200."I don't care. It's my money," he said. Strickland also discovered the team's former owners, Atlanta Spirit LLC, haven't posted an update on the Web for weeks.
The former Thrashers web site links to an article on the Phillips Arena website that informs ticket holders about the potential sale and relocation of the franchise (which has already happened) and that fans can get a complete refund if the Thrashers are not playing the upcoming season in Atlanta (and they're not).

Getting that refund was seemingly easier said than done, as Strickland demonstrated. Shortly after the interview with WSBTV, however, Lyons did receive a phone call from the Thrashers that his check would be available on Monday.

The very fact he had to reach out to the news media to get a refund for games that won't be taking place is more than a little absurd -- and quite a hassle -- and surely adds to the frustration that comes with losing your favorite sports team.

Photo: Getty Images

For more hockey news, rumors and analysis, follow @cbssportsnhl and @agretz on Twitter.

Category: NHL
The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com