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predators opening night lineup?

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07-12-2009, 02:49 PM
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predators opening night lineup?

Seeing as I live in Canada, I do not get a chance to see the Preds training camp or Rookie camp. What are you guys gathering from the rookie camp so far?? I can imagine our starting line for the seasons having a few rookies very well.

I am mainly wondering about,

Wilson, Santorelli, Hornqvist, Spaling, O'Reilly, Geoffrion, Budish and Beck.

I figure our top 9 looks like this,

Legwand, Dumont, Arnott, Erat, Ward, Sullivan, Wilson, Tootoo, and Jones.

So with one rookie already in there (Wilson), who rounds our our bottom 3 forwards??

I imagine Smithson, but who else?? I doubt whether we see Budish, Beck, or Spaling much this seasons, if any. But I look forward to seeing all three of them probably in next year or two. I think Budish and Spaling next year for sure!

So does Geoffrion make it?? O'Reilly?? Hornqvist???? Santorelli????? I hope we see more than 4th line ice time from some of them though, they have good offensive upside.

And what does the blueline look like???

Weber Suter
Hamhuis Klein
Blum and Sulzer/Franson???

What about Teemu Laakso?? I hear he is lookin good at camp.

I just see big time opening on both offense and defense for a trade/ free agent signing possibility. but as it stand, any further thoughts on what the lineup could look like? Any camp surprises??

We could use a veteran on the blueline as mentioned and obviously a goal scorer on offense. Should be interesting.

Also, we all know whow ill be tending the goal...

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07-12-2009, 04:21 PM
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Originally Posted by lightning_legwand View Post
Blum and Sulzer/Franson???

What about Teemu Laakso?? I hear he is lookin good at camp.
I think both Sulzer and Franson are more likely ahead of Blum there, and possibly Laakso, too. There's really no reason to rush Blum right now. He's not that much better than these guys, if at all (yet) and could benefit a lot from playing big minutes in the minors instead of bottom pairing role in the NHL at this point. I also think he needs to add some muscle.

Franson, I think, won't get much better playing in the AHL anymore. At least not if someone doesn't force him to focus on the defensive side of his game, but that doesn't seem to be a goal for either organization for some reason. Or maybe they tried, but it's just not happening. Offensively, I think he's already developed almost as much as he can in the AHL.

Sulzer has a OWC, so I'd consider it 99.99% certain that he's in the top 6 considering the organization.

Laakso plays a different game from these guys. He's strong (at least for his size), physical and smart defensive defenseman. Also a PK specialist. Decent skater, and can handle the puck too. I think and hope there could be a spot for him on the team. He's good for a bottom pairing role and someone to help the top guys with PK time etc.

Also, Laakso and Franson are on contract years, I think, which might also have some effect on where the team wants to play them and how much...

I think the chances of us seeing Sulzer and Laakso who played well together in Milwaukee occupy the 3rd pairing, and Franson, if he doesn't get traded, as the next Koistinen are pretty high. Although Laakso could also benefit from being a 1st pairing defenseman in Milwaukee... I guess we'll see after the training camp...

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