NHL Hockey Betting: Minnesota Wild at Winnipeg Jets

NHL Hockey Betting:  Minnesota Wild at Winnipeg Jets&h=235&w=320&zc=1

The end of the season can’t come quickly enough for the Winnipeg Jets. They’re currently tied with Calgary for the second to last place in the Western Conference three points up on last place Edmonton and one point behind Vancouver. The fact that those are all of the Canadian teams in the Western Conference underscores just what a lousy season it’s been for Canada hockey fans. The Jets are just 3-4-3 in their last ten games so they haven’t completely packed it in. They lost to Chicago in a shootout on Friday night but will meet a much more focused team here as they take on the surging Minnesota Wild.

The Wild are one of the more intriguing stories in the NHL. This is the third year that the team has looked dead in the water in early February only to catch fire down the stretch–and hopefully they’ll surge into the playoffs for the third straight season. Last year, they were propelled by the acquisition of goaltender Devan Dubnyk, this season the turnaround began when Mike Yeo was fired as head coach and John Torchetti named interim head coach. Torchetti is a solid hockey man that has coached all over the world at every level from the Juniors to the US minors to the KHL and NHL. He’s been an interim head coach in the NHL on two previous occasions and teams are always quick to drop a dime Torchetti’s way when they need someone to clean up a mess. Torchetti played nearly a decade in pro hockey but spent his entire career at the minor league level. At age 51, he’s been around the game longer than most of the players on his roster have been alive.

Torchetti’s personality is an interesting blend of being ‘unassuming’ and ‘intimidating’. He reminds me of Harvey Keitel as ‘The Wolf’ in ‘Pulp Fiction’. But for whatever reason he’s worked an impressive turnaround with this Wild team. At the time Mike Yeo was fired the Wild had gone 1-11-2 and were mired in an eight game losing streak. Under Torchetti, the Wild have gone 15-7-1. They’ve now lost two straight and he’s not happy about it. Minnesota can clinch a playoff berth with a win here and a Colorado loss to St. Louis. We don’t see the Jets providing much in the way of resistance.


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