September 16, 2011
Veteran likes Jets' youth movement'Opportunity to play big roles,' says Hainsey
By TED WYMAN, QMI Agency
WINNIPEG - Youth is the key to the Winnipeg Jets fortunes this season.
The Jets have plenty of veterans on defence and in goal, but many of the forwards are relatively green and it’s their development that could determine whether a playoff berth is realistic or simply a pipe dream.
“We’ve got some younger guys, under 25, that if they really grab hold of this and improve a lot right away, we could be a dangerous team,” veteran defenceman Ron Hainsey said.
Hainsey didn’t mention players by name, but he’s talking about players like centre Alex Burmistrov, 19, winger Evander Kane, 20, centre Bryan Little, 23, centre Ben Maxwell, 23, and defenceman Zach Bogosian, 21.
If those players develop the way the Jets envision, they will have a far more potent offence than last year and will be better than expectations.
“We have a lot of young players that are going to get an opportunity to play big roles and see how they grow into it,” Hainsey said. “For us to be really competitive right away, we need our younger guys to do big things right away. They’re going to get an opportunity here to grow together as a group.”