Edited Jun 18 at 3:10
Personally I do not know how much you watch Morgan Rielly, but he is defensively responsible when he needs to be. Case and point the playoffs. That whole series he was out on the ice MTL only scored twice. Also Morgan Rielly is big guy. He's 6'2 and 220lbs. The issue with the Jets is the inability to move the puck forward from defence. The 3 reason are:
1. You don't have enough puck movement on the back end, and guys who can skate the puck out of trouble.
2. Lack of defensive commitment from your forwards. Sorry Schiefele, Wheeler, Connor, Ehlers and Dubois weirdly, doesn't commit enough on the defensive side.
3. Poor structure.
Dylan Demelo looks like he will be eaten alive because of the poor structure. No offence there was a reason why the tides turned in the series with MTL. Trust a Rielly-Demelo pairing would do wonders. The reason you think Demelo would be eaten alive is no offence how poor Morrisey is at moving the puck and at transitioning. Demelo is a stay at home guy and needs to be paired with someone who can think offence and transition.
With Copp I understand he's one of your best defensive forwards however your team committed to Ehlers, Wheeler, Schiefele, Connor, and Dubois. Currently you have 2 NHL ready forwards in Cole Perfetti and Kristain Vesilianen (sorry if I butchered that). It's not that your forwards are terrible defensively, its just that they aren't committed to playing in their own end .his was an issue with Toronto until this year where we saw Matthews, Nylander, Tavares, Kerfoot and all the other players committed to playing defense. That tells me a coaching adjustment needs to be made. Whether its letting one of the assistant coaches go or something else, but it needs to change. Take it from me who watches every Leafs game. Sometimes a coach message gets stale and that's what is personally been shown to me.
This last part I might get a lot of flak from Jets fans, but that leadership group needs to change. Whether its stripping Wheeler of the captaincy or trading one of the leaders away (in this case Copp) it simply needs to change. We have seen lots of young players asking for a trade, players not wanting to return and etc. It shows me the leaders aren't doing their job. The point that hammers that home was Schiefele press conference where he showed no remorse for his actions. I understand parting with Copp might be hard on the leadership group but at some point you need new voices and etc.
Reilly is 6’1. If he was 6’2 I would consider it, but ideally the jets get someone over 6’2 and is physical. Reilly simply doesn’t fit that bill. As for defensive awareness, I agree Reilly is good in his own zone. But the jets don’t want good, they want really good. They don’t need another offence first d-man. Simple as that. Also, Reilly is left handed. We have too many of those coming up.
I agree with you point one. Which is probably the main reason the jets couldn’t score against montreal and why the jets struggle against good and fast forechecks. The only good puckmobers on the back end are JoMo and pionk. The average ones are demelo and Stanley. Then the others are below (and the others spent most of the season in the top 4
). However, for the reason that Reilly isn’t right handed, physical, big, or a great defensive guy, it makes no sense for the jets to get him, especially at this cost. And yeah, he’s not signing here lol.
I agree with your point 2 in part. Wheeler played well in the playoffs and was our best defensive forward for a good 7 years. I don’t blame him if he’s not great at 35. However, when he’s on his game, wheeler is quite good everywhere on the ice. He’s just not the same dominant guy anymore. Connor...well this has been well documented. The guy has serious potential to be an elite player but he can’t creat much offense on his own and is terrible in the d-zone. Schiefele is good when he wants to be. He tries sometimes, sometimes he doesn’t. Ehelrs tries his best whenever he’s on the ice. And dubios did one thing right all season, defensive play. So I’m not sure what you saw there. But yes, I agree with the point that schiefele and connor need to commit more. The others, I either don’t blame em or disagree.
3. I completely disagree with “poor structure”. The only reason Maurice’s structure doesn’t work is commitment. When he gets that, it works. We saw that against EDM and back in 2018. While I agree maurice needs to develop the commitment as that’s also a part of a coaches job but his structure is not the problem in my opinion. Though forcing ehlers to play dump and chase hockey for over 3 years with laine next to him made no sense. He fixed that now though.
The Reilly-demelo pairing wouldn't get eaten alive in the central because they aren’t good enough, it’s cause of physicality. The central is a heavy heavy division. The central forwards would crush that pairing physically. Same reason why I don’t think a JoMo-demelo pairing will last a full season in the central. The central plays a much different game than the other divisions. I honestly think it’s the division with the best built teams (for playoffs) except they tire eachother out trying to get out of said division. The Atlantic is good too though with Boston and Tampa. But that’s a story for another day. “Morrissey poor at moving the puck”. You watched the same player we in Winnipeg have been watching right? Puckmoving is his game lol. That and stick defence. That’s why that Morrissey-demelo pairing works so well. It’s literally the same premise as a Reilly-demelo pairing.
1. Perfetti may not be ready. 2. We have the cap space to commit to Copp too. With plenty of room to spare. He’s a big peice of the forward group and is a guy the jets will miss more than some top 6 forwards in my opinion. Unless he wants out, he’s not going anywhere. He’s too important to the jets success. I agree that part of the jets problems is commitment. But taking away arguably your most consistent and best defensive forward doesn’t exactly fix that lol. As for commitment, we’ve seen time and time again that the forwards can commit on this team (except for Connor..I honestly am starting to think that part of his game will never improve, but that’s not about commitment but rather ability). I think that Maurice got way more commitment out of his forwards this year than any other year so far. They played 5 man defence consistently for like half the year. That’s a sentence I never thought I would say about the jets, yet here we are. There’s only so much you can do with 2-3 decent d-men. I don’t blame maurice. I’m not a Maurice fan, but I just don’t think he’s in the wrong this time (again, never thought I would say it). He simply doesn’t have the talent available to him on the back end. No team with that backend should even be near the playoffs. Yet with hellebuyck and Maurice’s coaching, they made it to the second round. And yes, I do think Maurice’s coaching made a difference because we saw it on the ice. Hellebuyck didn’t steal every game the jets won and the forwards didn’t outscore the opposition every time either.
As for the leadership change, I would give wheeler one more year. The jets room is very close right now and they have this understanding and willingness to fight for eachother right now. They have commitment really. That’s never happened in Winnipeg on such a large scale. So chevy needs to do something to fix up the d-core so we can really see where this team is at. So yes, I think a leadership change could be beneficial, but I would wait one more year.