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Higgins officially back with Koivu and Tanguay (per CKAC)

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Old
10-31-2008, 05:09 AM
  #1
HockeyF3ind
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Switch Higgie and Lats around for a game or two?

No disrespect towards Lats intended. I like the way he has been playing so far this season. But we still have not seen what a Higgins-Koivu-Tanguay line could do. I'm just curious as to how many people think that Lats is critical to that line or if Higgins couldn't fill the spot as good or possibly better. To put it simply Higgins likes to take shots, and both Koivu and Tanguay like to pass, and I feel that it might not be a bad idea to experiment with that tweak.

And FYI flamers....I'm not saying we should do this right now, since we are winning and that GAS line is performing adequately. However, I do think that if we start to falter and consequently decide to tweak the top 9 that should be the first one tried.

Thoughts?

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10-31-2008, 05:22 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HockeyF3ind View Post
No disrespect towards Lats intended. I like the way he has been playing so far this season. But we still have not seen what a Higgins-Koivu-Tanguay line could do. I'm just curious as to how many people think that Lats is critical to that line or if Higgins couldn't fill the spot as good or possibly better. To put it simply Higgins likes to take shots, and both Koivu and Tanguay like to pass, and I feel that it might not be a bad idea to experiment with that tweak.

And FYI flamers....I'm not saying we should do this right now, since we are winning and that GAS line is performing adequately. However, I do think that if we start to falter and consequently decide to tweak the top 9 that should be the first one tried.

Thoughts?
Try anything you want but keep Tanger on his natural wing.Thats where he plays his best.

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10-31-2008, 07:13 AM
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I would like to see:

Tanguay - Koivu - Kovalev

just for fun once.. can it happen?

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10-31-2008, 07:18 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by vanylapep View Post
I would like to see:

Tanguay - Koivu - Kovalev

just for fun once.. can it happen?
This

+

SKost Plekanec AKost

+

Higgins Lang Latendresse


why? Because I just do.


Last edited by Blades 0f Steel: 10-31-2008 at 07:38 AM.
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10-31-2008, 07:32 AM
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I definitely think it's time to get AKost away from Kovalev. They both want the puck all the time and they just don't seem to have it going this season. I know we are first in the division and 7-1-1 but I think we can be even better. The offense IMO hasn't even shown close to what it can produce and I'd like to see Carbo shake it up a little.

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10-31-2008, 07:40 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tuggy View Post
I definitely think it's time to get AKost away from Kovalev. They both want the puck all the time and they just don't seem to have it going this season. I know we are first in the division and 7-1-1 but I think we can be even better. The offense IMO hasn't even shown close to what it can produce and I'd like to see Carbo shake it up a little.
Bad move - why change anything 9 games into the season when we're 7-1-1? Even though I'm not too fond of Lats, I think the way he's been playing this year is great and he absolutely deserves his spot on the second line. He adds a completely different dynamic than what Higgins would, and I'm just not sure if it would work with him in his place.

As for splitting up the Kovy line - bad move as well. The first reason being that Kovalev has publicly stated he doesn't like it when a coach keeps changing the lines - and why on earth would you want to upset Kovy? The guy is a beast and he is playing great. Secondly, it's only 9 games into the season and we are winning!

Man, I think people around here just want to change stuff for the sake of changing stuff. Leave well enough alone - if we go on a 5 game losing streak and play like crap, THEN we can talk about changing stuff. Let the lines develop some chemistry - it's still REALLY early into the season.

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10-31-2008, 07:47 AM
  #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BadHabit View Post
Bad move - why change anything 9 games into the season when we're 7-1-1? Even though I'm not too fond of Lats, I think the way he's been playing this year is great and he absolutely deserves his spot on the second line. He adds a completely different dynamic than what Higgins would, and I'm just not sure if it would work with him in his place.

As for splitting up the Kovy line - bad move as well. The first reason being that Kovalev has publicly stated he doesn't like it when a coach keeps changing the lines - and why on earth would you want to upset Kovy? The guy is a beast and he is playing great. Secondly, it's only 9 games into the season and we are winning!

Man, I think people around here just want to change stuff for the sake of changing stuff. Leave well enough alone - if we go on a 5 game losing streak and play like crap, THEN we can talk about changing stuff. Let the lines develop some chemistry - it's still REALLY early into the season.
So you don't think that they could be playing better? They are beating teams because the Habs are a very good team with an elite offense, great defense and superstar goaltending. I realize it's early but right now we have one line carrying the team's offense. I know it's taboo to switch lines when you are winning but I don't think a little tinkering is going to send the team into chaos.

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10-31-2008, 07:50 AM
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i'd rather see: kost, koivu, tang
kov, lang, lats
sergei, pleks, higgins

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10-31-2008, 08:05 AM
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If it ain't broken, don't fix it.
As much as I like seeing *some* line changes to see what happens, I believe Carbo sticks to the above.

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10-31-2008, 08:24 AM
  #10
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Even if you think that the Habs could be doing better with regards to forward lines and offense, I really don't get why you'd try to fix it by breaking up your one line that DOES work, and works extremely well at that. They got another even-strength goal against the Wild (it came off the stick of Bouillon, but they were the forward line).

To fix the forward lines I'd imagine you'd want to work on the units that work less well (swap AKost and Higgins maybe, or Kovy and SKost?).

What would putting Higgins on the first line accomplish? Tanguay and Koivu have 21 points and 10 goals between them -- that's extraordinary production for them. They're already scoring at a tremendous pace, and Higgins is just not going to make them improve on that pace. Nor is he really likely to outdo what Latendresse has done. Lats has been as good a scorer as Higgins (or better) for two years now, so he has his place on a scoring line. And he has 7 points, plus 6, and 30 hits (second only to Komi). Seriously, what does he NEED to do to get some consideration?

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10-31-2008, 08:26 AM
  #11
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I mean, you change the lines for 1 game out of 82, aint gonna kill nobody.

Can't they just make some change for fun, for Halloween's sake, disguise the Habs lines??

Tanguay - Koivu - Kovalev
Lats - Plek - SK
Higgins - Lang - AK

Quote:
Originally Posted by MathMan View Post
Even if you think that the Habs could be doing better with regards to forward lines and offense, I really don't get why you'd try to fix it by breaking up your one line that DOES work, and works extremely well at that. They got another even-strength goal against the Wild (it came off the stick of Bouillon, but they were the forward line).

To fix the forward lines I'd imagine you'd want to work on the units that work less well (swap AKost and Higgins maybe, or Kovy and SKost?).

What would putting Higgins on the first line accomplish? Tanguay and Koivu have 21 points and 10 goals between them -- that's extraordinary production for them. They're already scoring at a tremendous pace, and Higgins is just not going to make them improve on that pace. Nor is he really likely to outdo what Latendresse has done. Lats has been as good a scorer as Higgins (or better) for two years now, so he has his place on a scoring line. And he has 7 points, plus 6, and 30 hits (second only to Komi). Seriously, what does he NEED to do to get some consideration?
The productivity of the 2nd line relies on Koivu - Tanguay. You can replace the third member and the production could be about the same, but with different game play/dynamics.


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10-31-2008, 09:06 AM
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Originally Posted by vanylapep View Post
The productivity of the 2nd line relies on Koivu - Tanguay. You can replace the third member and the production could be about the same, but with different game play/dynamics.
In pre-season Higgins played with these 2 guys. They played against AHL players and we're invisible. Why would you even think about moving Latendresse. Unless he gets hurt that is. If Higgins starts producing on the 3rd line thats another reason not to move him up since it would mean all lines would be working. Except Kovy's

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10-31-2008, 09:17 AM
  #13
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I know Higgins got a lot of fans in here, but I just don't get it. Yeah, yeah I know... he scored 30 goals last season and he was injured for the first few games this year, but still. I don't know what it is, he seems like a real nice guy, but I just can't get onboard the Higgins bandwagon.

And personally, I wouldn't touch the first 2 lines. 46-14-27 is bound to explode very soon and 84-11-13 has been our best line since the very first game. Just my opinion.

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10-31-2008, 09:19 AM
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Last night esp., I thought Lats did a good job of using his size, not to punish but to get body position in puck battles. He will never, ever do anything as creative as Tang or Koivu with it, but both players need a retrieval guy who can finish. Lats 'can' finish but I think that he's falling in love with the skill of his linemates and playing a pretty game, making a pass when he should be banging it home.

He should be getting flak around here for shooting like Ryder did when a guy is open. Lats job is what Ryder's was, get the puck to a creative player, get to the net. I like what I'm seeing for the most part, the line's scoring and you have to think there's a breakout game waiting to happen.

Higgins, only what, 3 games in, has done what he does, takes a strong defensive position and works from his zone out. I like him with Lang so far. He'd score more with Koivu, but Lang seems much more able to play against good offensive C's than I thought. There are games where if they play their matchup even, you're happy because it opens things up for the other 2 lines. S.Kost. isn't dazzling right now, I sense that he's a bit frustrated, but this line can't run n gun against all opposition.

Higgins might convert more passes than Lats will but GL isn't going to play the defensive role that Higgins will. I'd wait a bit before making changes. Let A.Kost. get his legs back. Let's see if Higgins gets the puck cutting in fom the outside where he likes it, see how S.Kost adjusts, etc.

We all have our pet lines, but unless there's an offensive drought, I wouldn't change anything just yet.

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10-31-2008, 09:36 AM
  #15
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I would have made the move against Minnesota but Lats actually played a good game so he deserves another chance on Koivu's line. IMO he made the key play on our first goal against the Wild.

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10-31-2008, 09:47 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by roy munson View Post
I know Higgins got a lot of fans in here, but I just don't get it. Yeah, yeah I know... he scored 30 goals last season and he was injured for the first few games this year, but still. I don't know what it is, he seems like a real nice guy, but I just can't get onboard the Higgins bandwagon.

And personally, I wouldn't touch the first 2 lines. 46-14-27 is bound to explode very soon and 84-11-13 has been our best line since the very first game. Just my opinion.
Someone has to do the dirty work on a line. Lats is doing it on his line right now, Higgins is on his, let them play, I don't see a problem as of yet. Let them get their confidence going, let Higgins get used to Lang, they have the luxury of time right now, use it.

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10-31-2008, 09:51 AM
  #17
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Originally Posted by mcphee View Post
Last night esp., I thought Lats did a good job of using his size, not to punish but to get body position in puck battles. He will never, ever do anything as creative as Tang or Koivu with it, but both players need a retrieval guy who can finish. Lats 'can' finish but I think that he's falling in love with the skill of his linemates and playing a pretty game, making a pass when he should be banging it home.

He should be getting flak around here for shooting like Ryder did when a guy is open. Lats job is what Ryder's was, get the puck to a creative player, get to the net. I like what I'm seeing for the most part, the line's scoring and you have to think there's a breakout game waiting to happen.

Higgins, only what, 3 games in, has done what he does, takes a strong defensive position and works from his zone out. I like him with Lang so far. He'd score more with Koivu, but Lang seems much more able to play against good offensive C's than I thought. There are games where if they play their matchup even, you're happy because it opens things up for the other 2 lines. S.Kost. isn't dazzling right now, I sense that he's a bit frustrated, but this line can't run n gun against all opposition.

Higgins might convert more passes than Lats will but GL isn't going to play the defensive role that Higgins will. I'd wait a bit before making changes. Let A.Kost. get his legs back. Let's see if Higgins gets the puck cutting in fom the outside where he likes it, see how S.Kost adjusts, etc.

We all have our pet lines, but unless there's an offensive drought, I wouldn't change anything just yet.
This is a bit my view, we are not even 10 games into the season we lost only one in regulation time, played only 2 games with a full team where key guys like Higgins and A.Kost have missed games for injurries, hell the picture as not looked that bad so far.

On Guillaume now, He needs to keep his feet moving, sometime he does, sometime he does not. Consistency will come with time. He as been really good at creating space for both Tanguay and Koivu. I could bet rigth now that both Koivu and Tanguay would not be that excited to see Higgins replacing Lats. Lats is doing things that will make both Tanguay and Koivu effective and if he can grow in that role we have our self a playoff guy and more so a playoff line since Saku is already a clutch type player ...

On Higgins, IMO He Makes the 3rd Line better then Lats would, so overall I think keeping both of these guys where they are is better for the team.

What worries me; the play of the Kostsitsyn bros .. both brothers are in a slump. Not only they do not score but you do not even seen them with the puck. Pleks is having trouble but he is out there and works hard, but both kostsitsyn are completely invisible right now. If I where to do a Line Change rith now I would switch Higgins with A.Kosts, I think having the two borthers playing toghether with Lang could get them going and Higgins could be beneficial in the corners and along the boards for both Kovalec and Plekaneks.

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10-31-2008, 10:05 AM
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Originally Posted by Habruti! View Post
This is a bit my view, we are not even 10 games into the season we lost only one in regulation time, played only 2 games with a full team where key guys like Higgins and A.Kost have missed games for injurries, hell the picture as not looked that bad so far.

On Guillaume now, He needs to keep his feet moving, sometime he does, sometime he does not. Consistency will come with time. He as been really good at creating space for both Tanguay and Koivu. I could bet rigth now that both Koivu and Tanguay would not be that excited to see Higgins replacing Lats. Lats is doing things that will make both Tanguay and Koivu effective and if he can grow in that role we have our self a playoff guy and more so a playoff line since Saku is already a clutch type player ...

On Higgins, IMO He Makes the 3rd Line better then Lats would, so overall I think keeping both of these guys where they are is better for the team.

What worries me; the play of the Kostsitsyn bros .. both brothers are in a slump. Not only they do not score but you do not even seen them with the puck. Pleks is having trouble but he is out there and works hard, but both kostsitsyn are completely invisible right now. If I where to do a Line Change rith now I would switch Higgins with A.Kosts, I think having the two borthers playing toghether with Lang could get them going and Higgins could be beneficial in the corners and along the boards for both Kovalec and Plekaneks.
That's it in a nutshell, it's a matter of a young player growing. If he's having a night where he gets caught reading rather than reacting, he'll stink no matter what line he's on. I think he's with the right linemates as Koivu talks constantly on the bench and Tanguay seems to do the same. They'll make it clear what he needs to do.

S.Kost., probably the same thing, young guy, talented, growing up. I'm not worried. Maybe since when he's good, he's really good, we mistake quality for quantity, but he has to grow like any young guy.

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10-31-2008, 10:29 AM
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Originally Posted by BadHabit View Post
Bad move - why change anything 9 games into the season when we're 7-1-1? Even though I'm not too fond of Lats, I think the way he's been playing this year is great and he absolutely deserves his spot on the second line. He adds a completely different dynamic than what Higgins would, and I'm just not sure if it would work with him in his place.

As for splitting up the Kovy line - bad move as well. The first reason being that Kovalev has publicly stated he doesn't like it when a coach keeps changing the lines - and why on earth would you want to upset Kovy? The guy is a beast and he is playing great. Secondly, it's only 9 games into the season and we are winning!

Man, I think people around here just want to change stuff for the sake of changing stuff. Leave well enough alone - if we go on a 5 game losing streak and play like crap, THEN we can talk about changing stuff. Let the lines develop some chemistry - it's still REALLY early into the season.
Exactly... there is no need to make changes... we are winning and among the top scoring teams in the league... if you think the forwards aren't playing well, perhaps you need to readjust your expectations... there is no team in the league that scores every shift.

Quote:
Originally Posted by mcphee View Post
Last night esp., I thought Lats did a good job of using his size, not to punish but to get body position in puck battles. He will never, ever do anything as creative as Tang or Koivu with it, but both players need a retrieval guy who can finish. Lats 'can' finish but I think that he's falling in love with the skill of his linemates and playing a pretty game, making a pass when he should be banging it home.

He should be getting flak around here for shooting like Ryder did when a guy is open. Lats job is what Ryder's was, get the puck to a creative player, get to the net. I like what I'm seeing for the most part, the line's scoring and you have to think there's a breakout game waiting to happen.

Higgins, only what, 3 games in, has done what he does, takes a strong defensive position and works from his zone out. I like him with Lang so far. He'd score more with Koivu, but Lang seems much more able to play against good offensive C's than I thought. There are games where if they play their matchup even, you're happy because it opens things up for the other 2 lines. S.Kost. isn't dazzling right now, I sense that he's a bit frustrated, but this line can't run n gun against all opposition.

Higgins might convert more passes than Lats will but GL isn't going to play the defensive role that Higgins will. I'd wait a bit before making changes. Let A.Kost. get his legs back. Let's see if Higgins gets the puck cutting in fom the outside where he likes it, see how S.Kost adjusts, etc.

We all have our pet lines, but unless there's an offensive drought, I wouldn't change anything just yet.

Great post McPhee.... I 100% agree with this.

Even if you think Higgins > Gui, why change them?? Gui has shown chemistry with Tanguay and Koivu... we have three scoring lines... if Higgins > Gui then having higgins on the lang line makes that line better.

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10-31-2008, 10:35 AM
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Exactly... there is no need to make changes... we are winning and among the top scoring teams in the league... if you think the forwards aren't playing well, perhaps you need to readjust your expectations... there is no team in the league that scores every shift.
So your expectations of Plekanec, Kostitsyn and Kovalev after 9 games were to have the same amount of points combined that Tanguay has by himself? Ya, I'm sure...

I don't see what the big deal is to switch one player here or there. Keep the top line together (Koivu, Tanguay and Lats) but why not try to get the other guys going with a simple little change. Like Higgins and Akost swap spots or something. Or try Kovalev with Lang. It's not drastic but it's not going to totally derail the team like some think.

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10-31-2008, 10:46 AM
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without wanting to repeat what everyone has been saying:

Guillaume is doing the job with Saku and Alex. He will have his up and down.

No one can be perfect,,

He played his role perfectly against the Wild

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10-31-2008, 10:46 AM
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I don't doubt that Higgins could be a better fit on a line with Koivu and Tanguay than Lats, but putting Lats and Lang together would be a bad idea. That line would look like it was skating thru mud.

At 7-1-1, I don't see too much urgency to change up the lines, but let's not fool ourselves, there are going to be 100 line changes between now and the end of the season. I wouldn't doubt we see a Tanguay-Koivu-Kovalev line at some point, I would expect to see a Kostitsyn-Pleks-Kostitsyn line at some point, a Lang-Kovalev-someone line at some point, Higgins and Koivu playing regualrly again at some point, etc, etc, etc.

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10-31-2008, 10:49 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tuggy View Post
So your expectations of Plekanec, Kostitsyn and Kovalev after 9 games were to have the same amount of points combined that Tanguay has by himself? Ya, I'm sure...

I don't see what the big deal is to switch one player here or there. Keep the top line together (Koivu, Tanguay and Lats) but why not try to get the other guys going with a simple little change. Like Higgins and Akost swap spots or something. Or try Kovalev with Lang. It's not drastic but it's not going to totally derail the team like some think.
1) The original post and the title suggests breaking up the koivu line.... I'm 100% against it at this point in the season... .if they struggle for 4-5 consecutive games then I'm okay with it... but not now.

2) The ATAK line has played 2 games since Andrei came back. Based on their production last year (remember how they started slow and then took off in november); i'd keep them together a bit longer.

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10-31-2008, 10:55 AM
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So your expectations of Plekanec, Kostitsyn and Kovalev after 9 games were to have the same amount of points combined that Tanguay has by himself? Ya, I'm sure...

I don't see what the big deal is to switch one player here or there. Keep the top line together (Koivu, Tanguay and Lats) but why not try to get the other guys going with a simple little change. Like Higgins and Akost swap spots or something. Or try Kovalev with Lang. It's not drastic but it's not going to totally derail the team like some think.
I agree with you...I guess it's just the timing that has people questionning that tactic

I think the biggest thing thats hamepering some lines is the irregular schedule. I'd wait until the schedule becomes a bit more regular before making changes, if things aren't working then, then it might be time to adjust

But I do remember last year that Plekanec got sent down to the 3rd or even 4th line before he got put back with Kovalev last year, he needed to find his game, so....

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10-31-2008, 11:02 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 417
I agree with you...I guess it's just the timing that has people questionning that tactic

I think the biggest thing thats hamepering some lines is the irregular schedule. I'd wait until the schedule becomes a bit more regular before making changes, if things aren't working then, then it might be time to adjust

But I do remember last year that Plekanec got sent down to the 3rd or even 4th line before he got put back with Kovalev last year, he needed to find his game, so....
That's a good point about the schedule and probably a valid one. Crappy schedule comes into play again next week with another 4-5 days between games. I guess it could be tough to get timing down when you are only in game situations once or twice a week. Practice can only do so much...

And that type of move with Plekanec move is all I suggest. Right now we have 9 guys that can play at a high level but it's clear that they aren't all doing it at the moment. I don't expect Carbo to make a change yet but even if they are winning and certain players continue to be flat then I would expect him to make a minor tweak.

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