Torts and numbered lines
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08-15-2011, 09:47 AM
Join Date: Feb 2004
Originally Posted by
This is what most coaches do these days I think. Lines don't stick together for long periods of times because coaches will move things around if things aren't working well. You don't have a set bunch of lines that get X amount of icetime and are kept together no matter what. If lines are struggling, any coach will adjust icetime or mix up the lines (which is why I laugh when people complain about Tortorella mixing up the lines...every coach in the NHL does it and every teams fan base complains about it like it's something unique to their team)
At any rate, people should also keep in mind that if Gaborik and Richards and whoever on their left wing really click, it's going to mean less icetime for players like Callahan, Anisimov, Stepan, and especially Boyle, Prust, etc.
We might see players like Callahan either holding steady at their point totals or even declining a bit as they get less icetime. Of course, if that's offset by a large increase in scoring from Gaborik and Richards, the team should still come out on top.
What's been interesting (and impressive) over the last couple of years, is that Torts has had to adapt his coaching style. He's always had a reputation, which he himself openly admits, as a guy who plays a short bench, rotating 9 or 10 players, rather than a full 4 lines. Last season, however, he really did use the entire forward roster, giving the less skilled players real minutes because they stepped up.
It'll be interesting to see how much those minutes suffer if Richards and Gaborik do click, or if the way Torts runs a game has fundamentally evolved.
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