The Jets have been grounded. The Winnipeg Jets, that is. The team’s flight to Minneapolis, Minnesota yesterday was forced to divert and land in Duluth, Minnesota, a 250 km drive from Minneapolis, due to a nasty Spring blizzard that is blanketing much of the area in a blanket of snow.
Scott Brown, a spokesperson for Jets owner True North Sports & Entertainment, had confirmed Saturday afternoon the Jets' plane, en route from Winnipeg to Minneapolis, was diverted to Duluth, Minn., about a 250-kilometre drive away.
UPDATE: The team has elected to fly back to Winnipeg and will attempt to travel to Minneapolis later today… on gameday. Yikes. Good luck, boys.
Always worth a quote, Jets sniper Patrik Laine had some fun with reporters at Winnipeg James Armstrong Richardson Airport saying, "I'm not flying the plane. I don't know about the weather," he said. "I'm just going to sit on the plane and hopefully we're going to land in Minneapolis."
The U.S. National Weather Service has called the blizzard "historic," adding up to 10 centimetres of snow an hour could fall in and near the Twin Cities of Minneapolis and St. Paul, Minnesota.
"Total snow accumulations of [20-38 centimetres] are expected through Sunday from southwest Minnesota to east central Minnesota and northern Wisconsin," the service said. "Totals will taper off to [10-20 centimetres] across west central Minnesota."
No word yet on whether the Jets have touched down in Minneapolis or not. Stay tuned, hockey fans. Mother Nature could have a major impact on the 2018 NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs. The game is scheduled for 6pm local time and as of now it's still on. An outdoor party for fans outside the Wild's Xcel Energy Center, however, has been cancelled due to the large amount of snow accumulation overnight.
Wild head coach Bruce Boudreau, himself always a good quote, said he's a fan of the hockey weather.
Stay tuned to this post and we'll continue to update you on the status of both the Jets' travel plans and on the scheduling of tonight's game. For what it's worth, there's more wind and snow in the forecast slated for tomorrow.