Hurricanes head coach Kirk Muller opted to shake things up a bit after the team's bad loss to Tampa Bay on Saturday night by jumbling the lines a little bit. He took Jeff Skinner off the second line with Jordan Staal and placed him with Riley Nash & Jussi Jokinen while Patrick Dwyer and Drayson Bowman were moved up to the second line with J. Staal. The Canes got barely anything out of their third and fourth lines during the Tampa Bay game, so moving an offensive stalwart like Skinner to a lower line could help them expose some bad matchups for the Rangers. Meanwhile, Staal and Dwyer have played well together in the past and could possibly carry the water against one of their top lines.
The plan did not completely backfire but it sure as hell did not work out in the Hurricanes favor. Once again, their first line was forced to carry the bulk of their offense while the rest of the lineup did very little to contribute at even strength. All this did was reduce Skinner's ice-time and limit how much of an impact Jordan Staal could have by placing him with weaker linemates. People might be satisfied with the Hurricanes getting a point out of last night, but they were very lucky to get to overtime with how badly the Rangers swarmed them after the first period.
I"m not going to place the blame on Muller for switching up the lines but to say that I don't understand the moves would be an understatement.no comments