Winnipeg Jets Report

Winnipeg Jets Celebrate WASAC Night – February 25

The Winnipeg Jets celebrated the sixth annual Follow Your Dreams (FYD) Day and WASAC (Winnipeg Aboriginal Sport Achievement Centre) games, presented by Scotiabank, on Feb. 24 and 25 at the Canada Life Centre. This special weekend was dedicated to honoring Indigenous culture, with a particular focus on connecting with youth from northern and remote Indigenous communities.

True North Sports + Entertainment unveiled the 2024 Jets WASAC and Moose FYD jerseys on Wednesday, Feb. 21, marking the occasion with a cheque presentation of $54,512.00 funds raised in support of WASAC throughout the 2022-23 season.

The highlight of the celebration, the Winnipeg Jets WASAC Night, took place on Sunday, Feb. 25 at 5 p.m., featuring a match against the Arizona Coyotes. A ceremonial puck drop paid tribute to Indigenous youth and elders, spotlighting figures such as Manitoba’s first Indigenous judge and former Canadian Senate member, Murray Sinclair.

The event was enriched with cultural performances, starting with Rhonda Head, a mezzo-soprano vocalist from Opaskwayak Cree Nation, who sang both national anthems, performing “O Canada” in Cree. During the first intermission, Métis singer Krista Rey presented the Métis National Anthem. The celebration continued with Aboriginal Music Hall of Fame member Errol “C-Weed” Ranville, round dance singer Darryl Buck, and Inuit throat singers Nikki Komaksiutiksak and her daughters, alongside DJ Uncle Craig who spun Indigenous-inspired music on the concourse, all contributing to the vibrant celebration of Indigenous heritage.


Winnipeg Jets Celebrate Black History Month – February 20
The Winnipeg Jets celebrated Black History Month by hosting a special Black History Night game against the Minnesota Wild on Tuesday, Feb. 20. This event was part of the NHL’s Hockey is for Everyone campaign, which aims to promote positive social change and create more inclusive communities within and around hockey.

The game honored the legacy of Bill Riley, the Jets’ first Black player, who took the ice as a right winger for the team during the 1979-80 season. Riley’s journey in the NHL began with the Washington Capitals in 1974, making him the third Black player in the league’s history. His pioneering career was recognized by the Nova Scotia Sport Hall of Fame in 1998, celebrating him as the first Black Nova Scotian to play in the NHL. Beyond his playing days, Riley significantly contributed to the sport as a coach and general manager for the Moncton Wildcats, helping to establish the team as a prominent QMJHL franchise.

Photos by Jonathan Kozub | Winnipeg Jets