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Dustin Byfuglien Not Likely To Play This Season

Elliotte Friedman reports that the latest development in the Dustin Byfuglien storyline is that the defenseman may not play this season opening the opportunity for the Jets to be active at the Trade Deadline.

The Winnipeg Jets have been in the news a lot on Saturday. After head coach Paul Maurice said he’s hoping the team doesn’t go out and acquire a big-name rental or give up young assets to improve the team this season, reports from Elliotte Friedman during Saturday’s Headlines on Sportsnet said things might have gotten easier for the Jets to do just that.

Friedman noted that Dustin Byfuglien’s playing future with the Jets isn’t 100% confirmed but could be getting clearer. Friedman said Big Buff is not skating yet and that “it does look like the most likely scenario is that he doesn’t play this season and they revisit his future in the summer and see where everything stands at the particular point in time.”

As for what the Jets will do next, if Byfuglien doesn’t actually play, this opens up a window and a great deal of cap space for the Jets to do something before the NHL Trade Deadline should they choose to.

What will Winnipeg do? The team doesn’t seem to want the GM to do much more than add a small piece or two that might be considered a “boost”, while the GM has a tendency to go for the big move that would put the Jets over the hump.

And, as the Jets win big games like they did on Saturday against the Blues, Kevin Cheveldayoff may be tempted if he’s got a piece of Byfuglien’s $7.6 million salary to spend.

Related: Kasperi Kapanen Pulled From Toronto’s Lineup: Trade Speculation Swirls

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