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09-03-2013, 01:53 PM
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Originally Posted by Digger12 View Post
On the surface this logic makes sense, but doesn't the other team have some say in which lines are on the ice when the theoretical Hemsky/Zherdev line is out there?
Certainly, but no matter how you look at it, we would have a line with supreme skill playing against their worst pairing no matter what. Whether it be Hall/Gagner/Yakupov, Perron/RNH/Eberle, or Zherdev-Gordon-Hemsky, one of those lines will be playing against some poor defenders and would be almost certain to generate some scoring opportunities.

People seem to think Hemsky is some awful defensive liability, that is simply not the case. Our biggest problem last year and years prior is that we almost never have any decent puck moving D, and get hemmed in our own zone. Ference will improve that aspect and we should have at least one great puck mover on each pairing this season. If Hemsky gets the puck skating out of the zone, it's very likely he skates into into the other end for an opportunity or at least cycles it long enough to get a line change. Wingers don't have a lot of responsibility regardless in their own zone, it's mostly up to the defenceman and centre to chip the puck out or feed a winger. With an elite defensive center in Gordon and some actual puck moving defenceman, a line of Zherdev-Gordon-Hemsky would be able to break out easily enough and are talented enough to at least spend the majority of time in the offensive zone, and that is all that is required out of a "shut down" line.

Obviously Zherdev is just one example of a player we could get, and a lot of people are against him due to his past. I've just been using him as an example but really any other skilled LW on that line would make it dynamic. Even a defensive liability isn't such a big deal to put on that line as long as he has enough skill to create plays with Hemsky or by himself. Latendresse if healthy would have been a great fit.

Some players who could be extremely helpful on that 3rd line:


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