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New players means new lines - What would you do?


Prime Minister Koivu
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7 hours ago, GHT120 said:

No, not chopped liver ... and I am actually a great fan of his talent; as I have been with many former Habs that never consistently lived up to their potential (e.g., Malakhov ... loved him)  ... but in this difficult stretch where the team NEEDS its most talented players to step up he has 2 assists in the last 12 games ... 10 of his 21 assists came in the first 13 games, when the team was hot ...  at -7 he is tied as the worst +/-  on the Habs despite his 16 assists 5-on-5 (sadly, he is tied with Eric Staal ... who has done it in roughly one fifth the number of games) ... despite his skills, especially passing, I am not certain he has made any line-mate better for any extended period since joining the Habs; chemistry just doesn't seem to be his subject ... he is a perimeter player and frequently disinterested on the habs defensive side of centre ... rolling him out shift after shift, PP after PP, game after game could well be one of the issues with he Habs current malaise; he seemingly doesn't have to earn his icetime

There were times that Malakhov looked like he could be one of the best dmen in the league. I even remember one year where the start they were saying he could be a Norris contender than he would disappear. I can’t remember at any time in the habs were you could say that Drouin looked like one of the top wingers in the league. It was hard enough to find many nights where you could say he was the best winger in the habs.

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1 hour ago, hab29RETIRED said:

There were times that Malakhov looked like he could be one of the best dmen in the league. I even remember one year where the start they were saying he could be a Norris contender than he would disappear. I can’t remember at any time in the habs were you could say that Drouin looked like one of the top wingers in the league. It was hard enough to find many nights where you could say he was the best winger in the habs.

I remember a short span during the playoffs with TBL where Drouin looked like one of the best wingers in the league, I think it was after he was brought back from a stint in the minors.

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12 hours ago, hab29RETIRED said:

There were times that Malakhov looked like he could be one of the best dmen in the league. I even remember one year where the start they were saying he could be a Norris contender than he would disappear. I can’t remember at any time in the habs were you could say that Drouin looked like one of the top wingers in the league. It was hard enough to find many nights where you could say he was the best winger in the habs.

 

Can't disagree ... but I was just thinking in terms of unfulfilled talent that tantalized me.

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With the cap/recall situation, the Habs do not have the flexibility to rest players or play some of the depth players.

 

What do you think the lineups should be down the stretch as they prepare for the playoffs?

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2 hours ago, alfredoh2009 said:

With the cap/recall situation, the Habs do not have the flexibility to rest players or play some of the depth players.

 

What do you think the lineups should be down the stretch as they prepare for the playoffs?

They have the depth to rest defencemen at some point and could rest forwards by playing 7 defencemen ... but all once they are completely comfortable they have a playoff spot; which they may already be ... because if they lose some games when load managing for the playoffs and then miss the playoffs they will be a joke

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And the blender is back on in today's practice ...

 

Anderson - Danault - Caufield
Toffoli - Suzuki - Armia
Lehkonen - Kotkaniemi - Evans
Frolik - Staal - Perry

 

Edmundson - Petry
Kulak - Chiarot
Romanov - Merrill
Gustafsson

 

Anderson now on his off wing? Evans on RW? And yet another line combo for Kotkaniemi?

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I heard Caufield was actually the LW.

 

I wonder if this means they think Tatar will be back, goes with Danault,  and Frolik gets bumped by Caufield.

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10 minutes ago, Commandant said:

I heard Caufield was actually the LW.

 

I wonder if this means they think Tatar will be back, goes with Danault,  and Frolik gets bumped by Caufield.

If that happens I would rather put CC back with Evans ... they seemed to have energy and chemistry ... maybe they would spark KK (14 games with one assist, 19 since he scored ... although stats are not the sole measure of a players game)

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Okay we officially clinched a playoff spot and assume everyone is ready to play except for Drouin. What should our lines be?

 

Tatar - Danault - Gallagher 

Toffoli - Suzuki - Anderson 

Perry - KK - Caufield 

Lehkonen - Evans - Byron 

 

Kulak - Weber

Edmundson - Petry

Chairot - Merrill 

 

Please don’t screw this up Ducharme by insisting on Staal and Armia should play but who would you sit instead?

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35 minutes ago, Prime Minister Koivu said:

Okay we officially clinched a playoff spot and assume everyone is ready to play except for Drouin. What should our lines be?

 

Tatar - Danault - Gallagher 

Toffoli - Suzuki - Anderson 

Perry - KK - Caufield 

Lehkonen - Evans - Byron 

 

Kulak - Weber

Edmundson - Petry

Chairot - Merrill 

 

Please don’t screw this up Ducharme by insisting on Staal and Armia should play but who would you sit instead?

I would sit Caufield if the forwards are healthy. Armia beside Kotkaniemi 

 

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33 minutes ago, Prime Minister Koivu said:

Okay we officially clinched a playoff spot and assume everyone is ready to play except for Drouin. What should our lines be?

 

Tatar - Danault - Gallagher 

Toffoli - Suzuki - Anderson 

Perry - KK - Caufield 

Lehkonen - Evans - Byron 

 

Kulak - Weber

Edmundson - Petry

Chairot - Merrill 

 

Please don’t screw this up Ducharme by insisting on Staal and Armia should play but who would you sit instead?

 

I like the lines ... but on defence I can't see DD playing Kulak with Weber given that Chiarot has averaged the most TOI 5-on-5 this season on the D-corps ... the third pairing is where I can't predict what DD will do ... mix&match between Kulak, Romanov and Merrill ... I suspect that Merrill's size and experience will keep him in the lineup ... plus I've read/heard that he has played RD most of his career, so more natural to him than either Kulak or Romanov ... Kulak has 10 NHL playoff games, Romanov none (obviously) ... I would tend to go with Kulak at the moment, but expect that they will stick with Romanov ... at least initially

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2 hours ago, Prime Minister Koivu said:

Please don’t screw this up Ducharme by insisting on Staal and Armia should play but who would you sit instead?

 

Based on the deployment of Staal and Kotkaniemi the last few games, if one of them sits to keep Evans in, it's probably not going to be Staal.  I could see a Perry-Staal-Armia line (with Lehkonen-Evans-Byron the other one in the bottom six) to start with Kotkaniemi and Caufield being subbed in after a loss to shake things up.

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27 minutes ago, dlbalr said:

  I could see a Perry-Staal-Armia lineto start with Kotkaniemi and Caufield being subbed in after a loss to shake things up.

And after the 2nd loss in game 2? Flip a coin, as wont matter a hill of beans.:(

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1 hour ago, DON said:

And after the 2nd loss in game 2? Flip a coin, as wont matter a hill of beans.:(

Frolik and Belzile?

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21 hours ago, dlbalr said:

 

Based on the deployment of Staal and Kotkaniemi the last few games, if one of them sits to keep Evans in, it's probably not going to be Staal.  I could see a Perry-Staal-Armia line (with Lehkonen-Evans-Byron the other one in the bottom six) to start with Kotkaniemi and Caufield being subbed in after a loss to shake things up.


me no likey the sounds of Perry-Staal-Armia

 

no sireee I do not like one bit.

Staal has not stolen a spot from anyone so can’t believe he draws in, but think you’re right and it does seem to be trending that way.

KK was a beast in the bubble, need to let him reclaim his mojo.

62-71-41 earned their spot so I think Staal is odd man out.

I’d roll with:

 

90-24-11

73-14-40

94-15-17

62-71-41

 

8-6

44-26

27-77

 

Pretty close to the lineup that crushed it out of the gates, dance with the one you brought type of thing.

 

Last chance for 31, 6, 24, 90, 40 to prove they deserve to be part of the solution, not the problem.

If they suck out, time to move on in some form or another of expansion draft, trades, buyout, retiring, letting them walk.

 

 

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Chairot and Weber together is a mistake. 
 

Leafs will expose their slowness and their poor breakout play. You need a quick puck mover paired with a beast. 
 

Our D gets pressured and we turn the puck over. We turn the puck over and Mathews puts it in the net

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2 hours ago, hockeyrealist said:

me no likey the sounds of Perry-Staal-Armia

 

no sireee I do not like one bit.

 

Here's the other thing that came to mind when I was pondering those lines.  The Frolik-Staal-Perry line had a bit of success playing as of late on a slower type of cycle.  With the pace typically slowing in the playoffs, I can see Ducharme liking the idea of three big bodies that can play physical on Toronto defenders and grind out some shifts.  I'm not convinced that's necessarily the best way to go but that seems like the type of safe line most coaches like and fans don't like.

 

The funny thing is the Lehkonen-Evans-Byron line really complicates things if the goal is to keep them together.  The fourth line is effectively dictating the third which isn't something you see very often.  There are many more options with those three split up but it's really hard to not give them a longer look.

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17 minutes ago, dlbalr said:

  The Frolik-Staal-Perry line had a bit of success playing as of late on a slower type of cycle. 

Am all for playing Perry, but with 2 boat anchors to carry up and down the ice, am also all for playing with 2 different and younger linemates...maybe much faster Ylonen or the like; as team should be looking more down the road for actually contending.

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39 minutes ago, dlbalr said:

 

Here's the other thing that came to mind when I was pondering those lines.  The Frolik-Staal-Perry line had a bit of success playing as of late on a slower type of cycle.  With the pace typically slowing in the playoffs, I can see Ducharme liking the idea of three big bodies that can play physical on Toronto defenders and grind out some shifts.  I'm not convinced that's necessarily the best way to go but that seems like the type of safe line most coaches like and fans don't like.

 

The funny thing is the Lehkonen-Evans-Byron line really complicates things if the goal is to keep them together.  The fourth line is effectively dictating the third which isn't something you see very often.  There are many more options with those three split up but it's really hard to not give them a longer look.

True, they surprised me in that regard. Good for a fourth line expectations to chew up some time in the o zone but as mentioned, that creates 2 4th lines essentially. So to solve that:

Ive always thought Lehks-KK-Armia made for a great two way, cycling line that fits playoff style as well.

so, if we rolled the 

Frolik-Staal-Perry and

Lehks-KK-Armia

There would be some interesting options for remaining 6...

Evans, Byro would be victims with 90-24-11 staying put.

Then roll Toff-Suzuki-Anderson assuming the aforementioned happens.

90-24-11

73-14-17

62-15-40

67-21-94

interesting, but think I prefer Byro and Evans to Frolik and Staal.  

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Saw some articles talking about KK not making the playoff lineup... haven't caught the last few nights.

Has he really been out performed by Staal? Staal looked dreadful when i've watched.

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1 hour ago, dlbalr said:

 

Here's the other thing that came to mind when I was pondering those lines.  The Frolik-Staal-Perry line had a bit of success playing as of late on a slower type of cycle.  With the pace typically slowing in the playoffs, I can see Ducharme liking the idea of three big bodies that can play physical on Toronto defenders and grind out some shifts.  I'm not convinced that's necessarily the best way to go but that seems like the type of safe line most coaches like and fans don't like.

 

The funny thing is the Lehkonen-Evans-Byron line really complicates things if the goal is to keep them together.  The fourth line is effectively dictating the third which isn't something you see very often.  There are many more options with those three split up but it's really hard to not give them a longer look.

 

Quite simply, Frolik has done nothing in his limited ice time this season to be worthy of a spot in a healthy lineup come playoff time.  I don't see this as being considered at all, especially since Ducharme was quick to put him back in the press box the moment that Byron became healthy.    The question is Armia or Caufield as the winger, Frolik isn't even in the discussion IMO.

 

As for Staal, he really hasn't done much to earn a spot either, though it can be argued that Kotkaniemi also hasn't been playing well since the trade deadline.  So I do see it as possible that they prefer Staal.

 

Perry at LW - One of KK/Staal - One of Armia/Caufield

That seems to be the competitions.

 

 

The other three lines should be 

 

Tatar - Danault - Gallagher

Toffoli - Suzuki - Anderson

Byron - Evans - Lehkonen
 

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1 hour ago, Commandant said:

... especially since Ducharme was quick to put him back in the press box the moment that Byron became healthy ...

 

Generally agree with he overall point ... but Frolik was an Emergency loan and was clearly out before Caufield or Evans, so not certain what that change means overall

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1 hour ago, bbp said:

Saw some articles talking about KK not making the playoff lineup... haven't caught the last few nights.

Has he really been out performed by Staal? Staal looked dreadful when i've watched.

 

Not certain he was outperformed but neither are shining and Staal is the "playoff veteran" ... ***if*** he plays over KK it is more that than him beating out KK per se

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11 minutes ago, GHT120 said:

 

Generally agree with he overall point ... but Frolik was an Emergency loan and was clearly out before Caufield or Evans, so not certain what that change means overall

 

It means that Caufield is ahead of him.

 

Since my analysis was that the last wing spot comes down to Caufield vs Armia, I think my point stands. 

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1 hour ago, Commandant said:

The other three lines should be 

 

Tatar - Danault - Gallagher

Toffoli - Suzuki - Anderson

Byron - Evans - Lehkonen
 

Evans is playing well, but not sure i would play him over Kotkamiemi on 3rd line? Want Evans playing; but in Staal's spot instead. 3rd or 4th line centre, flip a coin between the 2 younger guys. 

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