By Nick Villano @nick_villano on June 13, 2014
The Winnipeg Jets seem to have a very good roster, yet they cannot find a way to get to the playoffs. They fired coach Claude Noel and brought in Paul Maurice to right the ship. To do that, he is going to need to make some changes to the roster They have a ton of free agents to make decisions on, and these five guys will not be back with the Jets next season.
The free agent pool is flooded with capable fourth liners. Since there are so many to choose from, most will go for minimum, or at least close to it. The Jets will try something new with their new coach. They know what they get from Chris Thornburn, so they are going to try to catch lightning in a bottle with another player.
Devin Setoguchi did not gain the interest some thought he would last season. He didn't do much to reward the Jets for taking the chance and signing him, and he scored less goals last season than he did in the lockout-shortened season. He won't get much in free agency, and he definitely won't get it from Winnipeg.
Olli Jokinen has been the big fish in a little pond for most of his professional career. He has played for bad teams that didn't have much of a shot at a title. He is at the point in his career where he wants to play for a Stanley Cup, and the Jets just aren't going to be there within the next few seasons.
The main problem with the Jets over the past few years is goaltending. Unfortunately, they have Ondrej Pavelec signed for the next three years, so that problem may continue. They can try to bring in a capable backup, but Al Montoya is not the answer. He had his best season in years, but the Jets aren't going to be willing the pay what the market will for him.
Evander Kane is the kind of piece other teams really covet as he is young and super talented. The 22-year-old can become a superstar with the right tutelage. He has 99 goals before he turned 23, and some team is going to give the Jets a very good package to bring him along. That is the kind of thing a new coach needs to succeed.
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