Friday, September 14, 2012

Jets All Out Top 25 II: #19 Antti Miettinen

A mid-December addition, Miettinen added depth to the Jets.
(Photo Courtesy Yahoo! Sports)
Antti Miettinen, 32, RW, 6’0, 190 lbs
Last Year's Ranking: Not Ranked
This Year's Ranking: #19
Difference: N/A

Winnipeg Jets GM Kevin Cheveldayoff made a shrew move to acquire Antti Miettinen via re-entry waivers after the Tampa Bay Lightning signed the 31 year-old Finn to a two-yeard deal.

However, the move wasn't as shrewd offensively at first with the former 20 goal scorer as he was hoping.

In 45 games in Jets blue, Miettinen scored 13 points (five goals, eight assists) - his lowest totals since he scored one goal in 16 games in 2003-04 with the Dallas Stars.

Add to that he didn't score a goal until his 34th game into being a Jet (only six points in the 33 leading up to that game) and his stock wasn't much of a factor in the Jets season.

But you can understand the move to grab the ex-Minnesota Wild/Dallas Star.

Despite his meager eight points in 20 games in the KHL for Ak Bars Kazan early in the 2011-12 season, in 2009-10, playing alongside Mikko Koivu, Miettinen notched 20 goals and added 22 assists - albeit on a supposed "first line" of a non-playoff team.

The move to add Miettinen to the lineup was a depth move as the Jets wanted to make sure they didn't have to unnecessarily rush any of their younger players to play in the NHL right away.

Miettinen got a mixed reaction from Jets fans on the whole - and a mostly negative reaction from me for this ranking.

If he had been more of an impact offensively, his ranking would have been much higher.

Though he was fairly more consistent in the last part of the season - five goals, four assists in the last 13 games, his lack of offensive production during the stretch drive was enough to keep him way away from the top 15 players on the Jets.

With a season up in the air, the best thing for Miettinen to find his scoring touch again would be to start the season in Winnipeg and see how things develop with a training camp in Jets blue instead of in Russia.

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