Winnipeg Jets: Blake Wheeler's Start to Season Reminiscent of 2011 Start

Anthony Capocci@CapocciJETSContributor IOctober 21, 2013

WINNIPEG, MB - OCTOBER 4: Blake Wheeler #26 of the Winnipeg Jets keeps an eye on the play during first period action against the Los Angeles Kings in the home opener at the MTS Centre on October 4, 2013 in Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada. The Jets defeated the Kings 5-3. (Photo by Lance Thomson/NHLI via Getty Images)
Lance Thomson/Getty Images

One of the Winnipeg Jets’ top forwards is struggling at the start of the season. Through nine games, Blake Wheeler has only one goal and four points.

The points and statistics don’t say it all. Wheeler hasn’t even been noticeable in the majority of the games he’s played this year. He’s been a turnover machine, and he can’t generate scoring chances in the offensive zone.

This isn’t a new occurrence as Wheeler has had another slow start that is very reminiscent of this one.

In the 2011-12 season, the first year the Jets returned to Winnipeg, Wheeler was invisible for the first 18 games. He posted seven points in those 18 games, but he had zero goals. Yep, he didn’t score once in that span. It was a terrible start.

The positive out of that slow start in 2011 was the fact that Wheeler turned it around and ended up leading the Jets in points with 64. Can he do the same this year?

Obviously it’s still very early and we know he’s capable. It’s possible for him to do the same this year, but he has to show some signs of life soon if not for his own sake, then for the Jets sake.

The Jets are an inconsistent team on the verge of being mediocre. They won’t have a chance at turning their season around without the help of individual players such as Wheeler.

Wheeler is one of the most relied upon forwards on the Jets roster so when he isn’t producing the Jets most likely aren’t winning. And coming off of a huge contract extension, Wheeler is one of the focal points on the team.

It’s been a disappointing start for Wheeler and the Jets, but he’ll have to do whatever he did in 2011 to try and turn this season around.