Jets in tough in Central Division

Mark Scheifele celebrates a goal during preseason NHL action last season. Scheifele impressed...

Mark Scheifele celebrates a goal during preseason NHL action last season. Scheifele impressed IceCaps coach Keith McCambridge during his 10-game stint with the club during their playoff run. (Fred Greenslade/REUTERS)

KEN WIEBE, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 10:37 PM ET

The Winnipeg Jets understood it was going to be a big challenge as they made the move from the Eastern Conference to the wild, wild West.

That proved to be the case as the Jets slipped to seventh spot in the Central Division after battling for a playoff spot in the Southeast Division during the two previous seasons.

There’s no doubt that a knee injury to Mark Scheifele played a key role as the Jets faded from the picture last spring, but the fact remains that five Central Division teams qualified for the Stanley Cup playoffs.

Although there are still nearly two months before teams report for training camp and there is time for roster improvements to be made, all of the evidence suggests that each of the six teams that finished ahead of the Jets in the standings have improved.

The Chicago Blackhawks made a bold statement while signing Winnipegger Jonathan Toews and Patrick Kane to eight-year contract extensions worth $84 million per player.


Videos

Photos