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Taro T

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  1. You want to know what the difference was in why those lines respectively looked better & a little worse overall in this game than in previous games? It's USAGE. The Mittelstadt line only got caught against the McKinnon line for part of 1 shift. They looked good against the Avs 4th line. And that was pretty much who they were out against exclusively. They also got to start the 1st PP before they'd even taken a shift. Mittelstadt & Olofsson were in their comfort zone and played w/ less (no?) hesitation when their line finally got a shift 7 or so minutes into the game. They also never had an icing go against them but even drew 1 or 2. That's huge. Didn't notice them against Compher's line at all & only caught very brief stints against that top line. Had they been on for an icing, they would definitely faced one of those lines fresh off a rest while they wee at the end of a shift. Cozens line, w/ the possible exception of the shift Peterka got that glorious goal (great look by Quinn to see how open he was), was fed nearly exclusively the Compher line & on occassion the McKinnon line too. And often it was w/ Pilut & Fitzgerald behind them. Considering who they were up against, they played really well. And the Avs #2 line is waaay better than Detroit's. (Heck, IMHO, it is better than Detroit's top line.) Until 4 games ago, Mitts was getting the usage Cozens line is now getting & Cozens line was getting mainly 3rd & 2nd line opponents. (Okposo's line seemed to split between 4th line & top line.) It's part of why this guy isn't as down on Mitts as everybody else. His getting tougher usage helped build up the confidence of that Cozterkinn line. Now that his confidence is shot, HE'S getting lighter usage. They play a relatively weak set of opponents soon. Expect all 4 lines to start/continue to click. Again, darn shame that Comrie is broken because he & Anderson could get results like they had in October through this stretch. Not convinced UPL & Andy can, but am hoping. (UPL needs something to get his head on straight. Maybe this will be that something.) And really hoping that Granato starts having them play a little more responsibly over this next stretch. They SHOULD be able to do so w/out tanking the offense.
  2. Considering they were playing the defending Stanley Cup champs and doing so w/ 1 hand tied behind their backs (UPL), thought they played a very good game. Too bad the schedule makers didn't bother to check what else might be going on last night as there were a lot of STHers disguised ad empty seats. Guessing there were 5-6k in the building, but would believe any estimate from 4,500-7,500. They had chances, Olofsson hit a post in the 1st on the PP & Tuch had a glorious chance alone in the slot in the 2nd. There were other close calls, but those were their 2 best besides the ones they actually buried. All 4 lines, even the 4th line in limited usage (call the Okposo line the 4th if you want, but they're getting 2nd/3rd line ice time & taking 1/2 the shifts against the McKinnon line - so that checking line is the 3rd line at present), were playing well. Granato was definitely line matching more than earlier in the year. There were many TV timeouts that Mitts line hopped over the boards but then went back to the bench when the Avs put their 5 out for the faceoff. But figured we were in for a bumpy ride in net when UPL gave up the entire top of the net expecting Compher to move across the crease on their PP early. He probably would've but saw what he was given & took it. UPLs NHL days will be severely limited if he doesn't get the high shots back under control. A disturbing # of goals went in high. Don't know what they can do about the penalties. At least 2, if not 3, seemed imaginary, but the officials are looking for them & the Sabres PK (Tuesday night noted) is not anywhere close to good enough to give up more than at most 3-4 chances/game. They really need to clean the penalties up. Curious who drew up the play to start the 3rd. They had to have seen something on film to decide to try that. Unconventional, but it worked. Too bad they couldn't build on that momentum. Could go on about things they need to be better at, but they are cleaning stuff up. Frustrating as it might be, they are a work in progress. They're young and they were playing a superior team. They were in this. Clean up the penalties or put an NHLer between the pipes & they might have won. Do both & they likely would've. They knew they were playing the defending champs & played hard.
  3. Isn't the idea to get as many lines working as possible? Why would you pull Quinn off a line that's on fire to presumably help Thompson who is on fire himself? Expect that move would yield decreased production overall.
  4. Umm, you do realize today is a workday, right? Sure, move the game to 5PM and cut the # of fans attending from 8,000 to 3,000. 😒
  5. Acceptable or tolerated really seems to be getting deep into nuance IMHO. The timing of the Comrie injury really stinks because he broke right before the D (temporarily) got healthy. He looked OK before the D went MASH unit. He wasn't good enough in front of a bad team. But right now the team in front of him is playing better than what he backstopped. 3 lines are giving what we expected/hoped & the top pairing is playing well too generally though they're taking too many penalties. Would really like to see what he can do when most of the guys in front of him are on their game before writing him off. But he's listed as "week to week." And knowing what we have in Comrie might go a ways towards parsing which side of the nuance Adams is on.
  6. It definitely seems to be an evaluation year. And a development year. Which builds the frustration. They should be evaluating at all times and trying to win. But they seem petty set on their top 2 lines & top 2 pairings. The evaluations there seem complete. Expect they know what they expect from the older guys in the bottom 6 & bottom pairing & where they see them fitting in (or not) for the future. They're still writing their book on the others.
  7. There are 2 options. Drop them to the 4th line, which happened realistically 3 games ago, & let them get their confidence at 5v5 back with sheltered usage or bench 1 or both of them. Right now, it is obvious that the chosen option is the 1st. Personally, expect that's the right choice, but we'll see. Realize that isn't a popular choice around here.
  8. Results-wise they likely won't turn a corner until Comrie is back, and even then it might not happen. But there has been a bit of a shift in the coaching which indicates winning is taking a higher priority. These past 3 games the Cozens line has been used as the 2nd line & the line that hasn't been performing as well as the other 3 was dropped to 4th line deployment & TOI. Additionally, at minimum for the 3rd period last night, possibly the 2nd as well, Pilut & Fitzgerald weren't deployed together. Fitz was out w/ Dahlin the few times he took a shift. & Pilut was out w/ Power. Which would seem to indicate that strict development isn't the overriding factor.
  9. People said Ted Darling was drunk on the air; he swore he wasn't. Turns out he had Pick's disease.
  10. Doesn't work. Sabres are certainly on the M-NTC. They can sign him off waivers but almost definitely can't trade for him. Theoretically, they could claim him and make a side trade to try to effectively cut his salary in half. (An Okposo for a good kid trade, as an example.) But there wouldn't be an incentive for the Kings to do that, presumably. Though they are REAL tight to the cap, so even if they wanted to do something like that, that wouldn't be an option. Heck, w/ the cap space it would free up for them, if the Sabres did claim him the Kings should have a gentleman's agreement in place to give the Sabres a 2nd for Bishop's contract.
  11. Doesn't work. Sabres are certainly on the M-NTC. They can sign him off waivers but almost definitely can't trade for him. Theoretically, they could claim him and make a side trade to try to effectively cut his salary in half. (An Okposo for a good kid trade, as an example.) But there wouldn't be an incentive for the Kings to do that, presumably. Though they are REAL tight to the cap, so even if they wanted to do something like that, that wouldn't be an option. Heck, w/ the cap space it would free up for them, if the Sabres did claim him the Kings should have a gentleman's agreement in place to give the Sabres a 2nd for Bishop's contract.
  12. Hmm, spurned Sabres in the past & has 2 more years after this one at $5MM/yr. Magic 8 Ball, will Kevyn Adams make a claim? Sources say 'no.'
  13. Sabres should win it. Interested to see how much ice time Fitzgerald & Pilut get. Expecting 10-12 each. Has Clague been called up or is Lyubushkin's injury not expected to be more than a game or 2?
  14. The other "sucky" player stays where he is or joins the Hinostroza - Krebs rotation. And no, don't agree that splitting them up ensures that 2 lines are "1/3 suck." But totally get Granato's reluctance to break up the Jost line right now. And absolutely agree that the top 2 lines shouldn't be broken up. IMHO the biggest issue that line has is that Mittelstadt isn't driving play (for whatever reason (yeah, yeah, we know, it's because he sucks), once he gets the puck, if he can't pass it, he gets it along the boards and keeps it there; he doesn't try to get it to the center of the ice which pretty much ensures he'll eventually lose it; and driving to the center of the ice was his trademark whether he kept the puck or not) and neither VO nor Asplund/Hinostroza is going to drive play. Maybe Jost or Krebs could drive play with VO & Asplund/Hinostroza but have doubts on that. One thing lost in the improvement of the Cozens line is that they were getting deployed as the 3rd line most of this season. They got to gel while not getting a steady diet of the other team's top 2 lines & top D pairing. Granato bumped them up against Joisey and played them a lot against the Hischier line and they weren't quite ready for it but as Granato would say they seem to have learned from it as they were matched up against a very good 3nd TB line & dominated. Getting the easier matchups should help that Mitts line get some confidence. They played really well against the Bergeron line, not quite as well against the Krejci line but still were solid except when Dahlin took the puck off his foot, but haven't looked as good since. They can play good hockey, just need to believe it themselves.
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