Opposite for me. I haven't noticed Ryder on the ice in the past few weeks until the Habs game. He's been streaky his whole career, it's not just a fluke.
Wheeler has proven that he can be good without putting up eye popping numbers. He's brought it night in and out and has become a real good defensive player. Yes, he still ****'s up every once in a while, but it's drastically improven over the last year. For the right price I wouldn't mind seeing him back next year either.
Yes, I wouldn't mind seeing either in the playoffs.
Seguin and Sauve may not be ready though and I could be wrong and for this year Ryder and Wheeler are better options but personally I thinkj that would be a SICK line to put out in the playoffs those two would fly on the wings.
Ryder over the course of 2 playoff seasons scored nine goals whereas Wheeler over the past 2 has scored only one goal in 21 games!!
But, as Montiverdi46 pointed out, Wheeler is doin things without the puck unlike seasons before but I say the same for Ryder. When he's not scoring, he has plenty of chances and it seems to me his passing game is better.
So yeah, I'd like to hangon to both for the postseason..Now if a trade proposal shuld pop up thats too good to decline on, well by all means, go for it!!
The game Ryder had against Montreal showed how talented he is; and Wheeler had a nice stretch at center where he played very well- he's been more physical this year and this hit last night might have been the best since he came up here- I know its on Hamill but its a start and shows he can do it.
Wheeler will be important in the playoffs even if he doesn't score a ton.
As thing stand I don't think CJ is going to put Seguin in as our third line center in the playoffs, and I would agree with that decision as I feel it would be premature and irresponsible to throw the kid out there unless he has a great Game 1 or something. Unless they make a move, that leaves the job likely to Wheeler.
Furthermore, even if Wheeler isn't our third line center himself going into the playoffs, he makes valuable attrition insurance, as he's proven he can play center adequately, meaning we can replace the loss of one of our top 2 guys. Not that it won't hurt, but at least we're not replacing Krejci with Whitfield like we did last year.
As for Ryder, scoring depth has a domino effect. He's on pace for 20-25 and he creates a scoring threat on the third line that people still need to defend against, allowing the top 2 lines both more rest and better defensive matchups. Unless you can upgrade there, I'd leave him be.
Honestly by and large I consider our forward situation not great, but not our biggest problem, and would prefer to see the team devote its resources to upgrading our power play ability among the defensive corps.