I'm ok with either Kuhlman or Studs replacing Ritchie the statue, although I prefer Studs since I think he has more upside. I like Lauzon against this grittier Bolts but I like Clifton moving the puck. I agree about Chara but it will never happen, the only alternative would be with 7D which I'm not opposed to as long as Ritchie sits.My adjustments would be Ritchie and Wagner out, Lindholm and Kuhlman in.
Marchand - Bergeron - Pastrnak
DeBrusk - Krejci - Kase
Kuraly - Coyle - Bjork
Nordstrom - Lindholm - Kuhlman
I'm hoping last night was just an off night for the 2nd line and they'll rebound so I won't touch them. 4th line needs to be reworked, they've been awful through 2 games and they can't continue to run the same trio out there. Kuhlman is a better fit for the 4th line than Studnicka. I think Kuhlman's skating will play well against Tampa.. Kuraly is part of the 4th line mess but he does seem to make big plays a big spots so I'll keep him in there at Ritchie's expense.
I'd probably leave the defense alone. There's been some chatter about taking Clifton out for Lauzon. I agree Clifton wasn't good last night and tends to get himself in trouible/out of position but I think they need his skill set in there. They are struggling to move the puck and he's a guy who can be a one man breakout. I think Lauzon brings them too far in the other direction with the stay at home guys. To be honest, if I was sitting anyone it would probably be Chara. He basically only gets DZone starts against Point/Kucherov which is a real big ask, but he is really struggling. Through 2 games he has gotten zero offensive zone starts and 37 D zone starts at ES. It's really showing though, they are getting killed with him out there.
it's been that way all year. For awhile I thought he had a bad elbow or something.Scary thing is how often Chara whiffs on puck clears when the puck is on his stick and he isn’t even being harassed.
And his backhand clears are so weak that he might as well not even be trying to clear it
I would not be at all surprised. He wasn't moving very well.Hate to harp on it/bring it up, but I wonder if Bergeron is the F in question tonight. Bergy played 18:31 last night, Marchand was 21:00, Pastrnak 21:50. He's the only forward whose ice time varied significantly from his line mates. Bergy was 7th in 5x5 ice time among forwards. They're definitely doing some spot picking with his usage.
You know, I go back and forth on this.