Noel: Setoguchi needs to ‘play his A game,’ after benching vs. Bolts


Stop us if you’ve heard this one before, but Claude Noel isn’t happy with one of his players.

This time it’s forward Devin Setoguchi, who got parked during Tuesday’s ugly home loss to Tampa Bay.

“What I want from him is what I want from all players,” Noel said of Setoguchi, per the Jets’ Twitter account. “I want him to play his A game.”

Setoguchi, 27, played a season-low 5:35 against Tampa Bay and was all but benched after the first period. He was on the ice for Valtteri Filppula’s game-opening goal (score just 1:20 into the contest), then proceeded to play just one two-second — yes, two-second — shift in the middle frame, and one 4o-second shift in the final stanza.

Setoguchi has struggled to start the new year, going pointless over his last four games while posting a minus-4 rating. But the slump came after he ended 2013 in reasonably good shape, scoring three points in four games while playing nearly 18 minutes in a 2-1 OT win over Colorado on Dec. 29.

Following Tuesday’s loss, Noel made it clear he wasn’t looking just for points from Setoguchi, who has 20 in 45 games this season.

“I don’t think Devin’s played that great of late,” Noel said, per the Winnipeg Sun. “He’s a guy that can give us more. It’s not really about goals for me.”