September 19, 2011
Noel mum on split-squad lineups vs. Jackets
By Ken Wiebe, QMI Agency
Claude Noel wasn’t quite ready to reveal what the Winnipeg Jets plan to do in icing two lineups for Tuesday’s split-squad games against the Columbus Blue Jackets.
The only thing we know for sure is Noel will be behind the bench for the game in Winnipeg with assistant Charlie Huddy, while St. John’s IceCaps head coach Keith McCambridge will be in Ohio with Jets assistant Pascal Vincent and IceCaps assistant Mark Morrison.
“You’d like to have success in your own building, so I think you might have a little stronger team here,” Noel said on Day 2 of training camp Sunday.
“But you’d like to win them both.”
Judging by his Tweet, it looks like Jets hopeful Ben Maxwell will be suiting up at MTS Centre: “Can’t wait to hear the crowd on Tuesday. ”
The Jets are expected to unveil their rosters on Monday. You can be sure they’ll be dressing more than the required eight veterans on both fronts.
FIRST SCRIMMAGE: Group B earned a 3-1 victory over Group C as Levko Koper, Spencer Machacek and 2011 first rounder Mark Scheifele all netted singles Sunday in the team’s first scrimmage.
“It’s just a step, now I know I can score,” said Scheifele. “I got a breakaway, too, and got robbed (by Edward Pasquale). To get a goal was awesome. Really, I just wanted to play good defence, make good passes and play my game.”
Ron Hainsey had two assists for Group B, while Blake Wheeler scored for Group C.
Monday’s schedule features Group A taking on Group B in a scrimmage while all three groups will be on the ice for two sessions.
NUMBERS GAME: Jets centre Bryan Little gave some background on why he decided to switch from No. 10 to No. 18 this season and yes, it did have something to do with the fact Dale Hawerchuk once wore the digits here.
But that wasn’t the only reason.
“Once I found out they were going to be the Jets, it was a pretty easy decision,” said Little. “They told me (the Jets) were going to honour numbers rather than retire them and I just felt it was the right thing to do,” said Little. “(Eighteen) is the number I’ve worn in junior for four years.”