When the going gets tough in the NHL, the Winnipeg Jets — and the Atlanta Thrashers before them — get, well, fairly average.

Doesn’t exactly get you fired up, does it?

In the last four seasons the Jets and Thrashers have been a combined five points out of a playoff spot at the NHL trade deadline. They have exactly zero playoff berths to show for it.

Zilch.

Nada.

Nothing.

Talk about close but no cigar. When the snow starts the melt, the Jets become … meh. It’s hockey’s version of death by a thousand cuts.

And unfortunately for the Jets and their fans, the scene is repeating itself so far this year. The Jets are 0-2-1 since last week’s trade deadline. They’ve gone from one point out of playoff position to at least four points in arrears as of Wednesday morning.

Going into Tuesday night’s action the Dallas Stars held the eighth and final playoff spot, were four points up on the Jets and had two games in hand. Winnipeg has 16 games to go, so it’s time to get going.

The Vancouver Canucks on Wednesday night at MTS Centre should be just what the doctor ordered. Then again, that’s exactly what everyone was thinking on the weekend when the Ottawa Senators limped into town proceeded to lay the boots to the unsuspecting Jets.

The Canucks only allowed the New York Islanders to score seven goals in the third period on Monday night and win 7-4. That’s right. Seven. Not eight, but seven. Head coach John Tortorella’s job is hanging by a thread, the team is banged up, and their fans are frothing at the mouth. So there you go, Jets. It’s a victory served up on a silver platter, and it comes after the trade deadline. It’s time for them to prove they no longer wilt when the games get heavier.