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Prominent Pavelec

Jets goaltender Ondrej Pavelec is a restricted free agent this summer.

Wednesday, 25.04.2012 / 4:22 PM / Feature
By Kristi Hennessy  - Coordinator, Web Content
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Prominent Pavelec
Jets goaltender Ondrej Pavelec becomes a restricted free agent this summer.

Jets GM Kevin Cheveldayoff most likely has a full plate along with a full inbox these days. His to-do list must be longer than anyone could imagine. One name that is most likely sitting near the top of that to-do list is Ondrej Pavelec’s contract. Pavelec becomes a restricted free agent with arbitration rights this summer.

It is up to Pavelec’s agent, Alan Walsh to negotiate with Cheveldayoff to see if the right deal can be made, hopefully sooner than later.

If it were up to the 24-year-old from Kladno, Czech Republic, the decision would be easy, just come back and play in Winnipeg next year. Unfortunately for Pavelec and the Winnipeg Jets fans, the process isn’t that easy.

“I like it here and feel very comfortable here,” Pavelec commented the day after the season ended. “I would like to stay here but you never know what’s going to happen- it’s still a business.

“I think the team is really good and we’re going in the right direction. I like the city and the fans and the organization did everything to help us get comfortable here. I really like it here.”

Like almost every player in the dressing room the day after the final game of the season, Pavelec reiterated how dismayed he was that the team missed the playoffs but also noted how proud he was that the team never gave up the battle.

“Of course we’re disappointed that we didn’t make it,” said Pavelec. “It was our goal at the beginning of the year to make the playoffs and we didn’t, but it was a special season for us. For me, I was really happy to be a part of it…to be part of the first year of the new Winnipeg Jets. It’s been really fun to play here.

“We have a really young team. It wasn’t easy for us to come here everything was new at the beginning of the year which wasn’t easy at all. But, we battled hard all year long. You have to deserve to make the playoffs and you make the playoffs for a reason. It’s tough to make it; there are a lot of really good teams in the league.”

Pavelec showed a lot of growth and maturation as the season went on and truly earned every minute he played with the Jets. After playing 58 games in 2010-11 with the Atlanta Thrashers, he added 10 more to hit 68 this season. Through 68 games, he finished with a 29-28-9 record including four shutouts. He finished with a .906 save percentage and a 2.91 goals-against average.

“It feels really good,” said Pavelec of his number of starts. “I play a lot of games and I feel really comfortable in the net and feel really comfortable behind this team. I like to play. I always say that I want to play the games. I was really happy that I stayed healthy all year long and was able to play in those games.”

He attributes his ability to play the 68 games and stay healthy to his off-ice choices.

“I think I learned a lot from last year. It’s important how you manage your rest off the ice. I always like to watch TV and just stay home… I don’t do anything too crazy. It’s been a long year with a lot of games but a lot is how you manage your time off.”

Pavs’ favourite moment of the season?

“Every game in the MTS Centre has been amazing and I’m so happy I was able to be a part of it. It’s been really fun to play in front of these fans.”

Author: Kristi Hennessy




1 ANA 48 32 10 6 143 124 70
2 NSH 46 31 10 5 141 107 67
3 STL 46 29 13 4 148 111 62
4 CHI 48 30 16 2 151 112 62
5 WPG 49 26 15 8 138 122 60
6 SJS 48 25 17 6 131 132 56
7 VAN 46 26 17 3 124 118 55
8 CGY 48 26 19 3 140 126 55
9 LAK 48 21 15 12 133 129 54
10 COL 49 20 18 11 128 141 51
11 DAL 47 21 19 7 146 154 49
12 MIN 47 21 20 6 130 138 48
13 ARI 47 16 25 6 108 160 38
14 EDM 48 12 27 9 110 160 33


A. Ladd 49 17 23 10 40
B. Little 49 18 20 10 38
B. Wheeler 49 13 23 11 36
D. Byfuglien 49 12 20 9 32
M. Perreault 46 15 14 2 29
M. Frolik 49 10 16 6 26
M. Scheifele 49 7 19 4 26
E. Kane 34 10 12 6 22
A. Lowry 48 6 9 3 15
J. Trouba 33 5 9 5 14
M. Hutchinson 14 4 2 .935 1.90
O. Pavelec 12 11 6 .911 2.52
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