: Line Combos:
2013 Line Combos
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01-10-2013, 05:18 AM
Join Date: Jan 2005
I think back to my statement "Neil should be written in on the 4th line in permanent ink" from over 10 years ago and marvel at how he's developed as a player and a person.
That and my skepticism regarding Karlsson's pace of development are probably two of my more glaring misconceptions on HF.
I would qualify your statement about Neil to state that he seems to have a terrific sense of when he has to step up in a game. Games where the offensive corps just aren't getting it done, so he gets a dirty goal or delivers some big hits or a fight to turn things around.
Some games, he plays it pretty steady, other games, he comes up big and becomes a gamebreaker, his work ethic relentless.
I've seen elements of this in Zack Smith, I'm hoping he has the stamina (re: Condra) to maintain it over an entire season.
He'll learn from Neil that you can't go gangbusters every game.
My worry about Neil is that he'll have to fight heavyweights again with Carkner gone, but that should be a bit of a measured concern because Carkner didn't play all that many games over the regular season last year.
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