This week, the Winnipeg Jets re-assigned Jansen Harkins to the Manitoba Moose of the AHL. The good news is that, as a result, he’ll be eligible to play in the AHL All-Star Game. The bad news is that it means he hasn’t played well enough with the Jets to stick.
This season, Harkins’ play has improved. He’s played well with the Moose, scoring seven goals and 31 points in 30 games. And, during his time with the big club, he’s also scored two assists in 11 games. Last season, he had 15 goals, 16 assists, and 31 points in 70 games with the Moose.
Harkins’ Career at the Lower Ranks
Harkins signed a three-year, entry-level contract with the Jets in April 2019. The 22-year-old Harkins had previously spent the 2016-17 campaign with the Prince George Cougars of the WHL, where he scored 21 goals and 51 assists (72 points) in 64 contests. In total, he played four seasons with the Cougars and scored 242 points (75 goals and 167 assists) in his 275 games there.
While with the Cougars, he won several awards and was part of some strong junior teams. Specifically, he was selected twice to the WHL All-Star team for the Canada/Russia Series and played in the 2015 Top Prospects Game. During his international play, Harkins was part of the silver-medal winning team at the 2014 World U-18 Hockey Challenge as a member of Team Pacific. He also was on a strong gold medal-winning Canadian team at the 2014 Ivan Hlinka Memorial Cup, and he won a bronze medal with Canada at the 2015 U-18 World Championship.
Harkins’ History with the Jets
Harkins was picked by the Jets during the second round (47th overall) in the 2015 NHL Entry Draft. It was a strong draft for the Jets, who also chose Kyle Connor and Jack Roslovic as part of the team’s first three selections. Connor (who’s having a career season) and Roslovic are playing with the big club and have made an impact. Now it’s time to see how Harkins does.
This season, because the Jets have been dealing with a large number of injuries, Harkins was recalled from the Moose. He got off to a good start, and in a 4-1 loss to last season’s Stanley Cup-winning St. Louis Blues, he registered an assist. In fact, during his first four games with the team, he scored two assists. Although he’s hasn’t received much ice time, he’s made the score sheet.
However, his production has slowed recently and he’s been blanked from the score sheet for the past seven games. He still hasn’t scored his first NHL goal and has been stuck on the team’s fourth-line. Although Harkins stayed with the Jets during the All-Star break, he’s now headed back to the Moose. Although we haven’t heard yet, that might mean that Bryan Little (who had an injured ear) might be close to returning to action. If not, Harkins might be called back to the Jets quickly.
Where’s Harkins Now?
Harkins might be the classic case of a player who takes a longer time to develop. Although he’s had success at the lower levels, that success didn’t follow him to the big club – at least, not yet. However, if he’s able to make it with the Jets it would give the team a great 2015 draft class.
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