Jets ready for curtain call against Flames

- April 11th, 2014

CALGARY — Paul Maurice confirmed this afternoon that goalie Michael Hutchinson will make his third consecutive start for the Winnipeg Jets in their season finale against the Calgary Flames.

Hutchinson earned his first NHL win on Thursday night against the Boston Bruins and is about to be thrown into a back-to-back situation, something he’s familiar with from his time in both the ECHL and American Hockey League this season.

“He felt good after the game, confident and I want to see him in a back-to-back,” said Maurice. “He deserved to go back in.”

Maurice said he was even more impressed with Hutchinson’s 32-save performance against the Bruins after watching it on video.

“Clearly, that game last night was impressive but you need to watch it on video and slow it down because there’s a lot of things you don’t see,” said Maurice. “Some pucks hit a goalie and some pucks he moves on and reads. His game was even better on video than I thought it was from the bench. And I had a pretty high opinion of it from the bench.

“I really liked that.”

Maurice isn’t planning any other lineup changes, though he said there could be a game-time decision and that opens the door for the possibility that Ben Chiarot could draw into his second NHL game.

The Jets enter the contest 36-35-10, so I asked Maurice how significant finishing over .500?

“If it held anything to do with what we do next year, I would say yes. I want to see us play hard and play well,” said Maurice. “This one will be emotionally tougher for us and Calgary works hard. This is not going to be an easy flow game.”

The Flames are 35-38-7 and have two games remaining.

Flames head coach Bob Hartley talked this morning about raising expectations for next season and how he was happy about establishing a hard-working identity with his new group.

A lot of the talk around the Flames revolved around whether or not Boston College forward John Gaudreau (fourth round pick in 2011 who won the Hobey Baker Award as the top player in the NCAA) was going to sign his entry-level contract and turn pro.

Here’s how I expect both teams to start on Friday night:

Jets

Evander Kane-Bryan Little-Michael Frolik
Eric Tangradi-Olli Jokinen-Blake Wheeler
Matt Halischuk-Jim Slater-Eric O’Dell
Carl Klingberg-Patrice Cormier-Anthony Peluso

Toby Enstrom-Paul Postma
Mark Stuart-Jacob Trouba
Adam Pardy-Zach Redmond
Ben Chiarot

Michael Hutchinson (Ondrej Pavelec)

FLAMES

LW
Paul Byron-Ben Hankowski-Jiri Hudler
Curtis Glencross-Sean Monahan-Joe Colborne
Lance Bouma-Matt Stajan-Brian McGrattan
Bryce Van Brabant-Lance Bouma-Kevin Westgarth

Mark Giordano-TJ Brodie
Kris Russell-Chris Butler
Mark Cundari-Chad Billins

Karri Ramo (Joey MacDonald)

Categories: Hockey

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