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10-20-2012, 02:39 PM
  #15
Bryanbryoil
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cerebral View Post
I hope they keep Hartikainen playing with Eberle and Nugent-Hopkins. He could be a fit long-term if he continues to play with the tenacity he's shown he possesses. As long as he remembers he's not there to be a skill guy, I think he can really compliment those two players. That would open up a lot of possibilities with the big roster if Hartikainen proves he can play on a skill line.

Hartikainen-Nugent-Hopkins-Eberle
Hall-Gagner-Yakupov
Smyth-Horcoff-Hemsky

Now we're talking!

Mike Knuble was a big guy with some skill who bounced around the lineup until Boston gave him a shot at the age of 30 with Thornton and Murray. He went on to put up 8 straight 20+ goal seasons. I think Hartikainen can follow a similar trajectory (but hopefully a little earlier in his career) if he's given a prolonged shot to be a complimentary player on a skill line. His board work and ability to get to the puck first could be a huge benefit if he can play that way consistently.
The only concern that I have with Harski is that he doesn't have the speed to back up the D. If they can overcome that and he can play hard consistently battling in the trenches he could be a very good compliment to that line. Hell with Schultz on the ice at the same time you have another elite skilled player anyway

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