We now take you inside the Winnipeg Jets’ changing room, where the third players-only meeting in less than a week is in progress…
Dustin Byfuglien: “Okay, guys, let’s make it snappy. I wanna get outta here and get up to Lockport for some ice fishing. I got my hut set up and I hear the catfish are biting real good.”
Captain Blake Wheeler: “Ya, sure Buff. We’ll make the meeting as short as your attention span on the ice.”
Byfuglien: “You dissing me, Wheels?”
Wheeler: “Just saying. You seem to be in a bigger hurry to get to your fishing hole than you are to get back to our end after another one of your colossal blunders in the O-zone.”
Byfuglien: “Hey, my bad pinches and brain cramps wouldn’t seem so bad if Beavis and Butthead sitting over there in the corner would stop the puck once in a while. I’m not half as bad as those two make me look.”
Wheeler: “Don’t blame Bucky and Hutch for your screwups, Buff. Besides, help is on the way. They’re bringing Pavs back.”
Byfuglien: “The hell you say!”
Wheeler: “True story. Ondrej Pavelec is starting in goal Wednesday night when we play the Arizona Coyotes.”
Mark Scheifele: “That’s fake news! Fake news, fake news, fake news! That’s Donald Trump-level fake news! I won’t believe it until I see Pavs flopping and flailing in the blue paint.”
Wheeler: “I’m telling all you guys that Pavs is coming back. He’ll be here in five, 10 minutes.”
Scheifele: “Whose brain fart was that?”
Wheeler: “You ever heard that saying about how crap flows down from the top? Figure it out. Starts at Chipper, trickles down to Chevy, trickles down to coach PoMo, then the steaming mess stops in here.”
Bryan Little: “Stops in here? Nice to know someone in this room can make a stop!”
Wheeler: “Boys…boys…boys. Let’s not be sniping at one another. If you want to bitch and bark at someone, save it for the media. They’ll be in here as soon as our meeting is over. I’ll have to talk to the sons of B’s ’cause I wear the C. The rest of you guys can draw straws to see which two have to join me. Buff, you just hide in the showers as always.”
Chris Thorburn: “Why does Buff always get to duck out on interviews? That ain’t fair?”
Byfuglien: “Who asked you, Thorbs?”
Thorburn: “I’ve got a right to speak! I’m great in the room! Everybody knows that. If I wasn’t great in the room, you think I’d still be in the National Hockey League?”
Byfuglien: “If you’re so great in the room, maybe you should just stay in the room and let someone else have your five minutes of ice time.”
Wheeler: “Knock it off, you two! I told you, save your cattiness for the media.”
Jacob Trouba: “Wheels is right. We’ve lost four games in a row and we’re quickly losing contact with the wild-card playoff teams. We’ve all gotta haul together. One for all, all for one.”
Mathieu Perreault: “Oh, isn’t that rich? Look who’s talking about pulling together. It’s Mr. Trade Me, Mr. Holdout. It was nice of you to join us halfway through November, Troubs. What happened, mom finally kick you out of the house?”
Trouba: “Eat my shorts, Matty! You’re the most overpaid waste of skin in this room. I hope you and your 13 points enjoy playing in Las Vegas next year.”
Ondrej Pavelec enters the changing room…
Wheeler (standing to greet the Jets’ longtime scapegoat goaltender): “Pavs! Get over here, you big lug! Man, are we glad to see you, dude!”
Byfuglien: “Nobody’s happier to see you than me, Pavs. The two guys we’ve had in goal this season…we’d have been just as well off with that little twerp Justin Bieber in net. Every time I wave my stick at someone instead of actually trying to check them, the puck seems to end up in our net. Can’t be my fault, ’cause coach PoMo never benches me.”
Pavelec: “Well, I should warn you all, I haven’t gotten any better in my time with the Manitoba Moose. Check out my numbers. Just so-so. Same as my nine years in the NHL.”
Scheifele: “Ya, I guess the brass recalling you is kind of like offering a drowning man a drink of water. But Buff’s right. It’s been brutal. You can’t be any worse.”
Pavelec: “You have a short memory, Scheifs.”
Connor Hellebuyck: “Excuse me. In case you hadn’t noticed, Hutch and I are in the room. We can hear you.”
Byfuglien: “Nice to know something is working for you guys. Maybe you should have been trying to stop the puck with your ears.”
Wheeler: “Okay, enough! Time to draw straws and see who has to deal with those knobs in the media. They’ll wanna ask you all their dumb questions, Pavs. You in?”
Pavelec: “Just call me Strawman!”
Patti Dawn Swansson has been scribbling about Winnipeg sports for 47 years, which means she is old and probably should think about getting a life.
4 thoughts on “If the Winnipeg Jets have sent an SOS to Ondrej Pavelec, it must be fake news”
Awesom article Patti!! love it!!
Thank you, Jim.
Excellent piece. Just underscores what I’ve said more than once to friends and colleagues back in the Old Country. You wanted a Mark Chipman team, you got one.
Thank you, Curtis.