Warning fans not to believe everything they read, Winnipeg Jets’ goaltender Connor Hellebuyck said that a lot of the rumors that are out there regarding his situation with the team are not entirely accurate. When asked to elaborate on what that meant, the Vezina Trophy-caliber backstop said that what he says today could change tomorrow, and “that’s the business of hockey.”
Hellebuyck noted several times that he loves it in Winnipeg and said that he feels the Jets have a good enough team to win it all. At the same time, he said he was “open-minded” about his future. When a reporter said that “open-minded” could be taken a few ways and asked if he was referring to re-signing in Winnipeg or exploring his options, Hellebuyck said, “I’m not closing the door to anywhere.”
He went on to say that his primary goal over the remainder of his career is to win a Stanley Cup. “I’m gonna look at anywhere that I think can win a Cup and I know this locker room can win a Cup… so I’m standing here now telling you I’m gonna win a Cup.”
Saying that was pretty much the only information he could give, or otherwise put, the only guarantee when it comes to what motivates his decision-making is that he’s aiming to win the Stanley Cup. Thus, if he gets the impression another team gives him a better opportunity to do so, he’ll explore that option.
For the Jets, this essentially means that Hellebuyck will remain patient, watching how this season unfolds. If they don’t compete, or it looks like management isn’t doing whatever it can to make sure the Jets contend, Hellebuyck isn’t going to stay loyal. He wants to win and he’ll go wherever he feels he has the best chance to do so.
Hellebuyck Merely Kicked Trade Talks Down the Road A Bit
For now, he’s sold on what this team is capable of doing and the pieces it has to be contenders. Time will tell and the only way to know how much the Jets are in the conversation will be based on results when the team hits the ice and either piles up wins or losses.
As for whether Hellebuyck put any of these rumors to rest… it’s fair to say he didn’t. All that we can assume is that no trade will be happening right away. The organization and the player will revisit trade talks when there’s a better read on how well this team is performing.
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