The Winnipeg Jets re-signed 24-year-old forward Ben Maxwell on Friday. Terms of the deal have yet to be disclosed. Maxwell played in a few brief stints with Winnipeg last season, posting five points in nine games. He enjoyed some success at the AHL level, recording 25 points in 43 games with the St. John’s Ice Caps. Maxwell also chipped in 7 points in 15 Calder Cup Playoff games.
What made Maxwell’s brief call-ups to the Jets successful was the fact that he was able to contribute in very limited ice time. As a Jet, he never skated more than 9:41 in a game. However, if he wants to succeed as a role player in Winnipeg next season, he’ll have to work on his faceoff skills. In 15 NHL games between the Jets and Anaheim Ducks, Maxwell won just 44.1% of his draws.
Still a young player, Maxwell will have plenty of room to improve and will at least provide some depth on the farm team. At this point, I don’t expect him to break camp with the Jets, especially if Kevin Cheveldayoff isn’t finished making moves through free agency. Maxwell will probably end up being first in line when a call-up is needed due to an injury in the forward corps.
Maxwell has always put up solid numbers in the AHL so this will be another important year in his development to see if he can translate his minor league success to The Show. He’s another name to keep an eye on in St. John’s and at the very least, the Jets have signed a depth body.