Line combos and projections with those given lines?
While Avery is out, what do you think the line combos should be for the Rangers?
I for one believe that Gomez should be on the first line centering Jagr instead of Drury. No matter how well Jagr or Drury play individually, I just don't see them clicking all that much and they're games aren't very complimentary.
From the looks of it so far, Jagr is confortable in the playmaker's role on this team, and when he's playing well, he still is our best playmaker. Jagr also seems to have taken a personal liking in Gomez, and maybe Jagr is happier with Gomez than he was with Nylander. On the powerplay, it seems like Jagr is looking to set up Gomez, so why not try this on 5-on-5?
Hossa can do all the dirty work around the corners and net (and has shown great chemistry with Jagr), with Jagr roaming around to get open, and with Gomez' ability to control the puck, we could have a very efficient 1st line. Let's not also forget that Gomez is an all-around better player than Nylander is; he has more speed, has a better shot, better vision on the ice, is much more responsible defensively and fiestier.
The second line should be Straka on the left side, Shanahan playing on the right and Drury centering these two players.
Straka is a very versatile player, he can play the wing or center, and is a very sound two-way player. Drury is a very sound two-player as well and so is Shanahan. This line can play the north-south style of hockey and be very succesful. If I was Renney, I'd put this line out against other teams' first lines, and play matching of the lines. This would free up Jagr on the first line and allow him to have the puck instead of having his line chase it the way they had to against Ottawa. The second line of Straka, Drury and Shanahan is very capable of playing a defensive role and or play a very efficient scoring line.
Straka LW 25g, 50a, 75pts Drury C 22g, 38a, 60pts Shanahan RW 34g, 28a, 62pts
I also truly believe that Avery is a very skilled 3rd line player and would be awesome with Callahan and Prucha on the 3rd (we could have one of the best 3rd lines in the NHL) This would make for a very high energy, fiesty line, and would be a fan favorite, as they would not shy away from the hits or physical play.
Avery LW 15g, 15a, 30pts Callahan C 15g, 15a, 30pts Prucha RW 26g, 20a, 46pts
The fourth line should be Hollweg, Betts and or Orr/Dubinksy
That's a 238 goal projection from the first three lines, and I know it might sound like a lot, but we are very deep in talent on this team. We would have seven 20 goal scorer and three 30 goal scorers, including one player with 40. These numbers are not impossible to reach and wouldn't be achieved in only a best case scenario but are very realistic numbers. We could expect another 12 goals or so from the fourth line and about 20 to 25 goals from the defense for a total of 270-275 goals, very realistic numbers.
I would also like to add that the top two lines will be getting a lot of powerplay time and they would will get a fair share of their points on the powerplay, especially Jagr, Shanahan and Drury, I would also expect Prucha to see a lot of powerplay time.