New Lines with Fisher and Vermette back
My best guess:
Bondra Smolinski Hossa - good first line also defensively responsible
Schaefer Fisher Alfredsson - good hard work skill line
Vemette Spezza Halvat - let the young guns fly!
Langfeld Van Allen Neil - Crash and Bang
Redden Rachunek (though I think he should continue to sit)
Simpson Curtis L (can never seem to spell his last name :) )
What do you folks think?
Looks good to me :)
The real question is, who sits when everyone is back? Van Allen is the obvious choice as first to be voted off the island, but who's next? Assuming that it will be the injured centres returning (Bonk & White), and the fact that Langfeld has played very well, Vermette would sit out. And that's a shame because he's been steadily improving over the course of the year. If Varada comes back, I guess Langfeld will have to take a seat but he really deserves a spot with his play.
On D, if Volchenkov comes back, who gets to be #6? Simpson or Leschysyn? One thing's for sure, if Martin has a healthy club to start the playoffs, he will have a lot of tools for just about any kind of style to throw at the other team.
When Bonk and White come back, I see the lines like this:
Bondra Bonk Hossa
Schaefer White Alfredsson
Smolinski Spezza Havlat
Langfeld/Vermette Fisher Neil - depending on opposition
When Varada comes back, we may see this:
Bondra Bonk Hossa
Schaefer While Alfredsson
Somlinski Spezza Havlat
Varada Fisher Neil - Awesome agitator line
On defense I would like to see this:
Redden Volchenkov - once he is back in game shape and has his timing back
Simpson Curtis L
Rachunek has been disappointing as of late, but it's unlikely he'll not be on the ice come playoff time. May get scratched occasionally depending on the situation but that's about it...
Hey, I can dream can't I!
Why do you hate Rachunek? On his bad nights he's better than Pothier.
I actually think that either Pothier or Rachunek will be traded by the deadline
Martin has said that Bondra will likely play with Smoke or Spezz since they're right handed shots feeding the left side. so...
seems to make the most sense.
Actally what would make the most sense is moving White the 4th line.
Doesn't that just look better? You get the toughness on the top line, Bondra gets passes from Smoke on the forehand and Alfie benefits by playing with better players, Spezza and Havlat get a great boardman who'll go into the corners and get/protect the puck not to mention he's great defensively and has the hands to play with those guys. The 4th line gets an excellent checking line with good offence.
The only guy that "loses out" is White. But IMO this makes every line better while at the same time making better use of our depth.
I don't think Martin is going to stick Fisher on the 4th line to be honest...the day he came back he quickly moved up and logged a ton of ice time. He is no 4th liner and I'd expect Fisher to play alongside Spezza or Havlat.
I'd be really surprised if Varada does come back for this season. Even if he does, it'll most likely be after the playoffs have started.
Also, hoping Van Allen sits is a bit of a pipe dream. He's one of Martin's favourites and only if everyone is healthy is there a chance that he'll get scratched.
Going on my belief that Varada is done for the year, here's what I think the lines will look like.
Fisher-Van Allen-Neil (could switch Fisher and Van Allen as Fish didn't look great on the wing last year)
Leschyshyn Volchenkov/Simpson/Pothier/Hnidy (in that order of availability)
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