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top-shelf-1

While Cole is out...

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It is pretty unlikely, but I like the outside the box thinking. I don't recall ever seeing Cullen and Staal on the same line, considering all of the mixing and matching over the years, might be interesting.

The problem is that Brind'Amour has not shown too much yet. (Few have, but moving him to the second line, and presumable Sutter to the third line, leaves us potentially pretty thin at center on lines 2 and 3. Don't get me wrong, Sutter could surprise, but we would be counting on 4 question marks:

1. How does Staal handle being on the wing?

2. Is Cullen really a first line center?

3. Is Brindy really a second line center anymore?

4. Is Sutter really ready to be the third line center?

Simply sliding Ruutu up and shifting Walker up is the much more likely move. Much less interesting than your proposal though.

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At today's practive Staal centered a line with Ruutu and Samsonov.  Cullen, Whitney and Larose were together with Jussi jumping in there also.  Don't expect anyone to be called up yet.  McCarthy spent a considerable amount of time with Conboy when most everyone else left the ice.  The team worked extensively on puck control in the d-zone and quick transitions from the d-zone through the blue lines.  Most of the rest of practice was concentrated on the PK and PP.  The guys looked pretty loose.  Joni appears ready to go.

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...move Staal to LW and all the other centers up one line, which brings Sutter back up. Staal's already seen time at wing during the Team Canada camp, plus he's a sniper - let him shoot.

Interesting concept... I would like to see how that would work out. Hay Mo!stooges_curly.jpg

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Excuse me! We do have Conboy on Healthy Reserves! Cole is a gem of a player and plays hard...but so does Conboy! It's time for him to step up and show the coaching staff, the fans, and the Lightening what he is made of! Centering the 4th line with Yelle and Kostopulos(?) will make that line a very hard and dominating line to contend with. Let the others move up and fill the slots.

Go Conboy! We are all counting on you to be your best against the Lightening!!!

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Apparently Walker has the flu but is expected to play... please don't let it be like the flu bug we had two seasons ago where everyone ends up sick.

As a pharmacist it makes me wonder, if one of the guys get sick does the team doctor give everyone Tamiflu to prevent them from getting sick? I doubt it but that would help! They do it for family members all the time when someone in the household gets sick. If you are reading this JR keep that in mind.

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At today's practive Staal centered a line with Ruutu and Samsonov.  Cullen, Whitney and Larose were together with Jussi jumping in there also.  Don't expect anyone to be called up yet.  McCarthy spent a considerable amount of time with Conboy when most everyone else left the ice.  The team worked extensively on puck control in the d-zone and quick transitions from the d-zone through the blue lines.  Most of the rest of practice was concentrated on the PK and PP.  The guys looked pretty loose.  Joni appears ready to go.
This makes me feel a little better about tomorrow night (and going forward until Cole is back).  I'm appalled at our PK and PP so far.  Unreal...

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At today's practive Staal centered a line with Ruutu and Samsonov.  Cullen, Whitney and Larose were together with Jussi jumping in there also.  Don't expect anyone to be called up yet.  McCarthy spent a considerable amount of time with Conboy when most everyone else left the ice.  The team worked extensively on puck control in the d-zone and quick transitions from the d-zone through the blue lines.  Most of the rest of practice was concentrated on the PK and PP.  The guys looked pretty loose.  Joni appears ready to go.
Interesting lines. Looks like MO and company are looking for some chemistry. This could be fun to watch. Conboy should be fine on the fourth line and maybe he will get some PK time.  I hope your right about Joni because we need him back. Corvo is getting a workout without Joni in the lineup.

I agree we will leave the Rats alone for a while but I don't think it will be long before someone gets a call.

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It is pretty unlikely, but I like the outside the box thinking. I don't recall ever seeing Cullen and Staal on the same line, considering all of the mixing and matching over the years, might be interesting.

The problem is that Brind'Amour has not shown too much yet. (Few have, but moving him to the second line, and presumable Sutter to the third line, leaves us potentially pretty thin at center on lines 2 and 3. Don't get me wrong, Sutter could surprise, but we would be counting on 4 question marks:

1. How does Staal handle being on the wing?

2. Is Cullen really a first line center?

3. Is Brindy really a second line center anymore?

4. Is Sutter really ready to be the third line center?

Simply sliding Ruutu up and shifting Walker up is the much more likely move. Much less interesting than your proposal though.

It'd be Brindy centering the second, Yelle on the third, and Sutter on the fourth, so still, limited minutes, but a chance to grow.

On the concerns (support is a better word) voiced here for Conboy, I hear it and share it. But the fact is that without a reliable face-off guy, ANY line's effectiveness is diminished. Half the battle of putting the biscuit in the basket is possessing the biscuit. Cullen wins faceoffs. Brindy wins faceoffs. Yelle wins faceoffs. Staal doesn't, at least not reliably.

Some folks complained last year when I harped (and harp I did, I won't deny it) on Staal's poor performance at the dots. Some accused me of "hating Staal." Not true. I want him - and this entire team - to be successful. But any coach will tell you that the greater part of success is utilizing people's talents to the fullest possible extent. Staal calls himself a natural center, but think about where his goals come from: The wings. Total snipes. The guy's accuracy is incredible. So why fight it? Give him a center who can get possession and turn him loose. Conboy will have his opportunity. But denying someone with Staal's shooting ability the high-percentage opportunities he deserves is crazy, IMHO.       

  

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...move Staal to LW and all the other centers up one line, which brings Sutter back up. Staal's already seen time at wing during the Team Canada camp, plus he's a sniper - let him shoot.

hmm... not sure about that, staal has gotten pretty good in the face off circle and if that were to happen, i would hope sutter will keep his head up this time with us.

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I myself like Conboy and he deserves a shot. 1 thing for sure he gives 100% on every shift. I hope he gets the shot and runs/skates with it!!

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[quote name='top-shelf-1 wrote:


remkin']It is pretty unlikely, but I like the outside the box thinking. I don't recall ever seeing Cullen and Staal on the same line, considering all of the mixing and matching over the years, might be interesting.

The problem is that Brind'Amour has not shown too much yet. (Few have, but moving him to the second line, and presumable Sutter to the third line, leaves us potentially pretty thin at center on lines 2 and 3. Don't get me wrong, Sutter could surprise, but we would be counting on 4 question marks:

1. How does Staal handle being on the wing?

2. Is Cullen really a first line center?

3. Is Brindy really a second line center anymore?

4. Is Sutter really ready to be the third line center?

Simply sliding Ruutu up and shifting Walker up is the much more likely move. Much less interesting than your proposal though.

It'd be Brindy centering the second, Yelle on the third, and Sutter on the fourth, so still, limited minutes, but a chance to grow.

I don't think JR wants to bring up Sutter to play on the 4th line. It is pretty clear that job #1 is development for Sutter and he needs to be on a scoring type line either here or in Albany. Also, by pushing everyone up at center, we would have everyone playing above their level. Nice challenge, but too much risk.

Cullen is not a first line center.

Brindy (at this point in his career) is not a second line center.

Yelle is not a third line center.

Sutter is not a fourth line center.  (He would be below his level in some ways).

You could move Jokinen up to center the second line, but it just has too many guys above their paygrade.

I don't have the stats, but at the Philly game Staal seemed to win a few more faceoffs than in the past.

Would be interesting to see Staal on the wing as a curiosity, but I don't think (just conjecture) that our franchise player wants to play there. Interesting idea, but very unlikely to see it.

It looks like Conboy is the guy, but I tell you if this team's PP and scoring punch continues to struggle, look for Boychuk at some point.

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I know the staff has more knowledge than I do in coming up with the lines, but that doesn't stop me from having my opinion...so...

why not put Jussi on a line with Staal and Ruutu?

Right now the lines are listed as:

Samsonov-Staal-Ruutu

Whitney-Cullen-LaRose

Jokinen-Brind a'mour-Walker

Kostopoulos-Yelle-Conboy

Jussi was a point machine in the playoffs and he would allow Staal some flexibility in moving around having basically 2 centers on the line.  Maybe Staal could get lost on the ice and buy some space.  I'd also think about switching Walker and LaRose around if Walks is healthy enough (flu-cough,cough).  Cullen could get killed with Whitney and LaRose.

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I would like to see Staal on the wing, if Staal would also be playing center, I don't think any of our other centers have any chemistry playing with him so that would be iffy, I like him playing with Samsanov, they compliment each other well, as for Staal getting lost on the ice, there are too many players already getting lost on the ice, let's try to get everyone to the right place for once. =}

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[quote name='remkin wrote:


top-shelf-1 wrote:

remkin']It is pretty unlikely, but I like the outside the box thinking. I don't recall ever seeing Cullen and Staal on the same line, considering all of the mixing and matching over the years, might be interesting.

The problem is that Brind'Amour has not shown too much yet. (Few have, but moving him to the second line, and presumable Sutter to the third line, leaves us potentially pretty thin at center on lines 2 and 3. Don't get me wrong, Sutter could surprise, but we would be counting on 4 question marks:

1. How does Staal handle being on the wing?

2. Is Cullen really a first line center?

3. Is Brindy really a second line center anymore?

4. Is Sutter really ready to be the third line center?

Simply sliding Ruutu up and shifting Walker up is the much more likely move. Much less interesting than your proposal though.

It'd be Brindy centering the second, Yelle on the third, and Sutter on the fourth, so still, limited minutes, but a chance to grow.

I don't think JR wants to bring up Sutter to play on the 4th line. It is pretty clear that job #1 is development for Sutter and he needs to be on a scoring type line either here or in Albany. Also, by pushing everyone up at center, we would have everyone playing above their level. Nice challenge, but too much risk.

Cullen is not a first line center.

Brindy (at this point in his career) is not a second line center.

Yelle is not a third line center.

Sutter is not a fourth line center.  (He would be below his level in some ways).

You could move Jokinen up to center the second line, but it just has too many guys above their paygrade.

I don't have the stats, but at the Philly game Staal seemed to win a few more faceoffs than in the past.

Would be interesting to see Staal on the wing as a curiosity, but I don't think (just conjecture) that our franchise player wants to play there. Interesting idea, but very unlikely to see it.

It looks like Conboy is the guy, but I tell you if this team's PP and scoring punch continues to struggle, look for Boychuk at some point.

Oh, I can assure you that Staal doesn't WANT to play the wing, he was actually quoted saying just that when the news broke that he was being tried out on the wing for Team Canada. He also said center is his "natural position." But the guy is such a freakin' sniper. I really like Super Dave's idea about putting Jussi in Cole's spot. Let's face it, he'da probably been there in the playoffs if we hadn't acquired Cole.  

  

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without conboy: 0-2

with conboy: 2-0

coincidence?

didn't we have something like an 86% win percentage with him in the lineup last year? Coincidence or not, he does seem to bring something to the team that the guys react to positively.

  

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Staal just needs to score goals. He can center or wing as they all move around...
I agree with your first comment, but not your second.

Positions dictate players' responsibilities in both ends. In the O zone, centers need to go to the front of the net, create screens, and use their soft hands to clean up loose change. While Staal certainly has the hands for the job, he parks himself in front too infrequently. On the back end, the center is charged with keeping tabs on the opposing center, up to and includng clearing him from the front of the net while the D focus on working the corners and denying passes/shots that the opposing center would convert or tip.

Wingers work the outside in both ends (down low in the O zone and up high, covering the points in the D zone). They tend to be snipers with a great sense of the net from anywhere on the ice (Staalsy certainly has that!), with great "vision", i.e. playmaking ability due to "seeing" how things develop (he's got that too), in order to find the open man with lots of net to shoot at. Now certainly, centers must be great playmakers too - but unless Staal is willing to start parking himself in front of the net, he'll see more of both - playmaking and scoring - opportunities from the wing, because he'll get more open-ice breaks from up high in our D zone, and be more free to work his playmaking ability from the half wall down to the corners in the O zone.  

  

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[quote name='krad wrote:


canesfan06']without conboy: 0-2

with conboy: 2-0

coincidence?

didn't we have something like an 86% win percentage with him in the lineup last year? Coincidence or not, he does seem to bring something to the team that the guys react to positively.

  Pirated from another poster on another board (LGC), so I don't deserve the credit for looking up these stats.

Originally Posted by KaniacFever
33-9-7 with Conboy in the line up

I'll take those results any day.  Now where's that thread where people were talking about how big a mistake J.R. made in signing Conboy?  I know it's around here somewhere.

    

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Despite the 7-2 blowout Conboy played just over 7 minutes and was a minus 1.

I think there have been times where Conboy's agressiveness and willingness to drop the gloves have picked the team up, and maybe the guys see him as some kind of lucky charm. The run the team went on with him the line up in the past has also correlated with other factors.

I don't see having him in there as a big negative and with Cole out, we need someone there, but the team has gotten bigger and tougher, so what Conboy brings is less needed this year. Other than his agressive attitude and lucky charm affect, his real, actual affect is negligable. Put him in the Bruins or Flyers games we still lose, keep him out of the Tampa/Florida games we still win.

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