Blake Wheeler becomes leading scorer in Jets/Thrashers history

Andrew G. Zuber

The current captain of the Winnipeg Jets has risen to the top of the team’s all-time scoring list, thanks to a two-point night in a blowout win on Saturday.

Blake Wheeler scored a goal and added an assist in a 6-0 win over the Minnesota Wild, giving him 616 points with the club to vault him past Ilya Kovalchuk for most in franchise history.

If those names and numbers don’t add up to you, you could easily be forgiven. The Winnipeg Jets franchise — version two — splits their statistical history with the now relocated Atlanta Thrashers. That explains how Kovalchuk, who never wore a Jets sweater but played 594 games for the Thrashers, was the previous titleholder.

Wheeler has been along for the whole ride with the renewed Jets franchise since they relocated to Winnipeg, after being traded to the Thrashers during their final season. Wheeler was already the franchise leader in assists by a considerable margin, and his 202 goals place him third behind Kovalchuk (328) and current teammate Bryan Little (217). He’s also fourth in games played for the Jets / Thrashers, suiting up 675 times.

As for the previous version of the Jets — the one that existed in the NHL from 1979-1996 — they share statistical franchise history with the Arizona Coyotes. If you’re curious, Wheeler’s 616 points would place him 5th on that list, behind Shane Doan (972), Dale Hawerchuk (929), Thomas Steen (817), and Keith Tkachuk (623).

Hopefully, this clears everything up. Wheeler is the highest-scoring player in Jets / Thrashers history, but not Jets / Coyotes history.

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