Thread: Line Combos: Line ideas
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07-03-2008, 05:06 PM
  #95
claude boivin lives
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Gagne-Briere-Knuble
Lupul-Richards-Hartnell
Upshall-Carter-Giroux
Cote-Metropolit-Thoresen
Downie

Part of me wants to switch Knuble and Giroux, as we know Upshall-Carter-Knuble can be a great line. And while Briere and Giroux together may seem scarily small...I'd still like to see how it goes for a game or two. The passing and creativity between those two could potentially be incredible...add Sniper Gagne into the mix and we might really have something.

There's no need for anyone to get all concerned that Giroux won't be ready for first line minutes or anything like that. All this talk that certain guys shouldn't be on the first line, or shouldn't be on the third line...blah, blah, blah, it's all a bunch of crap. This team is not too different than last year's, and the top three lines can still be constructed in a way that has them all being quite effective, and mostly being deserving of rather equal minutes.

While the Upshall-Carter-Knuble line was great, I imagine there's a good chance they'll want to provide Carter with a legit playmaker this year in an effort to see more goals from him. I suppose that would be either Briere or Giroux.

If they want to move Briere to the wing, you'd think it would be on Carter's. Maybe...

Gagne-Carter-Briere
Lupul-Richards-Giroux
Upshall-Metropolit-Hartnell

Wait a second...as I just typed that out, I realized there is no way they're putting Briere on the wing, unless another forward gets traded at least. As it stands now, Briere on the wing would mean Metropolit at third line center, eh? Metropolit at third line center bumps someone out of the top nine. And there simply is not anyone deserving to be bumped out. Maybe Upshall, but that's a terrible use of Upshall if you ask me. It certainly can't be Knuble...who is coming off of scoring nearly 30 goals and making $2.8 mill. Besides, he's just not a fourth line type of player. You'd be wasting potential offense, and he wouldn't even be great at fourth line duties.

All things considered, I currently don't see any way they can intend to move Briere to the wing.

As for Downie...I'd like to see him getting time on the fourth line some nights in place of Cote, or perhaps Thoresen...and then giving him time in the top nine if there are any injuries. I don't see use for him as a regular...maybe on the fourth line, but certainly not above that. Not only are there too many guys ahead of him, but even if there weren't....I'm still very much on the fence about him, and whether or not he'll ever even be an effective NHL player. I know he's young and can still improve, but IMO, his skating and lack of quickness in pretty much all aspects of his game is going to prevent him from ever really cutting it. Sometimes, when he's out there...I just feel like everything he is doing is kind of in slow motion compared to everyone else. It's not just his skating.

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