According to Mike McIntyre of The Winnipeg Free Press, Mark Scheifele’s comments in his post-season media avail might just be the tip of the iceberg that is heading straight towards the Winnipeg Jets organization. Suggesting GM Kevin Cheveldayoff was given a new three-year extension to clean up his own mess, Scheifele might be one of many who are looking for a change. The only difference between him and his teammates is that he’s simply the only player to voice his frustrations publicly.
Related: Scheifele Not Ready To Commit to Future With Winnipeg Jets
McIntyre says the Jets were considered a team on the rise, but adds, “Now, just four years later, the Jets appear to have completely lost their way.” He notes, “The team is broken, closer to competing for the first-overall draft pick than the Stanley Cup. So, too, is the culture that we’re led to believe is an integral part of their DNA.” It is this culture the franchise and Cheveldayoff will need to address and that will be no easy task.
Suggesting things have gotten so bad that Scheifele is merely just another player to follow in the footsteps of names like Dustin Byfuglien, Patrik Laine, Jack Roslovic, Jacob Trouba, Evander Kane and Andrew Copp all wanted out, and then their coach Paul Maurice quit midseason because no one was listening to him, things are bad. McIntyre also hints that if guys like Paul Stastny and Kyle Connor and Pierre-Luc Dubois and Nikolaj Ehlers are candid about a frustrating season to media, “imagine what they’re saying behind closed doors.”
The good news is, there are reports that goaltender Connor Hellebuyck is not among the names looking to depart. Elliotte Friedman noted during Monday’s playoff broadcast that the veteran netminder has let it be known he’s looking to return.
Can Cheveldayoff Fix This?
How he’ll get this team back on the right track is going to be one of the storylines of the summer. Does it require moving the problems and the voices in the locker room that are dragging this team down? Will it simply take a long conversation and a different voice behind the bench?
The Jets started by letting their coaching staff know they were going to conduct an exhaustive search for a new leader. This feels like step one of a multi-step process.
Next: Mike Smith Takes Responsibility For Oilers Loss in Game 1 vs. Kings
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