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Tailing the Komets

This could be the key to the season

I'm going to pull one of Hit's tricks here for a minute so bear with me please.

Chaulk, Syro, Shaf which as we saw in the one game is a great line.

Leo, P.C., Huk, which should be a great line, especially with Huk creating loose pucks in the neutral zone that Leo and P.C. can convert.

Mac, Woods, Schrocky: Ice Patrol #2

O'C, Chwedoruk, Stayzer, Klempa, Varone, Warner

Those forwards lines make a lot of sense because you've got balance and scoring on the first two lines, and the third line could raise choas all over the place, plus you'd have the depth to fill in for them if they got thrown out, penalties, hurt, etc. That also means the other five guys would be really fighting for ice time because when Woods is ready, somebody is leaving. More on that later.

Defense could be Guy and Danko, Bertrum and Phillips, and Rodger and Woodard or DeAngelis. I still wonder if a pairing of Guy and Rodger couldn't be pretty good, leaving Danko with Woodard or DeAngelis. If you keep those forward lines, you'd need three rookies on defense to meet the minimum. This is where I have a wildcard and it gets tricky because if you need a tough defenseman who loves blocking shots, has size, etc. you could use..... Stayzer there. Suddenly, you're a lot bigger on the blueline with Phillips, Dupuis, Bertram, Stayzer and Rodger.  How about Dupuis and Stayzer. Dupuis could pinch because Stayzer would be the ultimate stay at home guy; Rodger and Danko kind of intrigues me too, but then  you'd have to find another rookie spot. Imagine Stazyer and Rodger playing with the line of Mac, Woods and Schrock. Could that work?

Suddenly you've got a lot of options up front and in back that make some sense. Or you could make a trade from strength to give up 2-3 players to maybe get the one piece you may need yet. If you need to, you could play with 10 forwards and 7 defensemen as well, or keep Warner who can play both, especially on the point of the PP.

So, on Dec. 23, the key to all this seems to me, is getting Syroczynski back from Norfolk. He is the one who makes all the forward lines work because he then gives you a legitimate No. 1 line with Chaulk and Shaf, and that makes the No. 2 line stronger. Suddenly you've got opponents who have to try figuring out how to match up with them, and the Komets would finally have the depth they planned to have all last summer.

With that third line, you may not win every fight, but I guarantee they'd wear you down so you were too tired to fight on a lot of nights. You wouldn't just have one fighter, you'd have three being a royal pain in the rear to everybody else driving them nuts. Woods can play center and all three can skate and forecheck. That would be fun to watch. Then throw Stazyer and maybe Rodger on the back end. That's a unit that could pound on people.

The key is getting Syro back because he solidifies the front lines and allows you to tinker with the back end.

What do you think? I have no idea how they'd have to work the salary cap.

Posted in: Komets


Wed, 12/23/2009 - 3:58am

Add a guy like Jimmy Bonnrau & it sounds good.

Wed, 12/23/2009 - 8:29am

i agree with whatever it was you were saying!!

Wed, 12/23/2009 - 8:32am

Based on those lines, its hard to imagine OC sitting. Chewy too..

Woods also seemed to flourish in his first stint while on Chaulk's line.. I guess it depends what they want out of Woods, if they want scoring he's going to have to be on a line with some guys that can get him the puck in the crease on a regular basis. If they just want him to knock the crap out of people.... Then Mac, and Shrocky are adaquate linemates..

I personally would prefer to see Stayzer as the 6th dman when he returns to the lineup.

Guy Danko
Bert Phillips
Stayzer Rodger
Woodard becomes your extra

I'm just not in love with DeAngelis as a defenseman, and we're too deep at forward for him... he's pretty much the same type player as Warner..

So until Syro is back, who takes his place in that #1 line? I vote for O'Conner.. but we all know that Hit Somebody gets the final say in these matters... :-)

Wed, 12/23/2009 - 8:42am

Blake--That all makes great sense. The only thing that has to happen and very soon is the veterans must start scoring goals. If not all of that is for not. I can see the possibility of a two or three for one trade with the addition of Woods. and if they get Syro back. Some very good players would than be available to swap for a big power forward or a BIG tough defensman. I know this much for sure. I am glad it is not me making those calls.

Blake Sebring
Wed, 12/23/2009 - 9:12am

The hardest part is you have to keep four rookie spots.

Wed, 12/23/2009 - 9:13am

Can you use the IR rule to "protect" players from having to make a decision? If so I think you will see the IR shuffle and that also helps the cap correct? Just wondering never been able to really understand the IR rules and how it is suppose to be used.

Blake Sebring
Wed, 12/23/2009 - 9:25am

Sure, you can, but the whole point of fixing lines is to create competition so it gets these guys playing as hard as they can. What am I doing -- explaining competition to a coach. Doh! LOL. Right now there isn't enough competition to keep everyone busting it.

Wed, 12/23/2009 - 10:08am

No question competition is a little lacking in some instances. I have always noticed how organizations use the IR to keep a player around and not wanting to put them on waivers. By the way not bad on the line combos, perhaps you should put down the pin, and jump behind the bench with coach Sims.

Blake Sebring
Wed, 12/23/2009 - 10:17am

Oh, heck no. I have way too much respect for coaches to do that. As you know and show, someone who spends 16 hours a day thinking and working on a specific sport for years and years ALWAYS knows 99 percent more than somone from the outside no matter how big of a fan or how big of an interest they have. The biggest Komets fan in the world doesn't know 35 percent as much as Al Sims does, just like he doesn't have that much expertise about what someone else may do as a profession. There are always a million things that laymen never consider. The worst coach the Komets have ever had knew significantly more about hockey than anyone else in the building.

Wed, 12/23/2009 - 11:04am

OK, I looked at your lines and defensive match-ups and I agree that Syro is the key. That is where we part company. I just can't see how you could leave O'C (rookie) and Chewarduk off a regular line. There is way, way too much skill with those two guys not to give them a regular shift.... Blake, it wasn't long ago you tried to tell everyone how tough trades were to make in this league. You said that scoring was down all over and teams would be unwilling to give up a playmaker. At the very same time you stated that defensemen were tough to come by and everyone is looking for more defense. I posted that maybe, just maybe we could package a deal of two defensemen for one playmaker and that was also shot down. ( The reason something like that makes sense is because it would help both teams plus have the added benefit of reducing the K's roster so they don't always have to put a player on IR to stay witnin the salary cap). So forgive me if I'm a little confused when I read your thoughts on a 2-3 players for 1 player trade....right now I wouldn't mess with the defensive pairings much.....here are my five players "on the bubble". 1) Stayzer (veteran), 2) Klempa, 3) Varone, 4) Woodard, 5) Warner......I have no idea how this woud work against the salary cap either. I'm only responding to Blakes' ideas.....Woods will add some excitement and some offense but I'm not sure that he is the answer. I think we need a legitimate heavyweight and another sniper along with Woods......Blake, two things. 1) What is the latest with Syro, and 2), even though I disagree with you on some things, I want you to know that I appreciate your forum.

Wed, 12/23/2009 - 11:21am

Alan: Hahahahah! I was wondering how long I'd have to wait for you to jump all over that one! I think this has happened before, but the last time it was on me and that was a LONG time ago. It sure was familiar reading it again. Maybe you and I just have too good of memories that last too long? In any event, I'll also echo what you said about appreciating the blog although I'm not on it too much anymore. It is a good source for information although the conversations tend to sway away from the team from time to time, but that's expected. I think the reason Blake gave one time was very accurate and understandable that people tend to get tired of simply re-stating things over and over about the same stuff, so they have to fill in with other things. Makes sense.

In any event, Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to everyone. Stay safe and enjoy those around you.

Blake Sebring
Wed, 12/23/2009 - 12:01pm

Yep, you're right, I forgot OC was still classified as a rookie. That actually makes it easier because it means you can make more adjustments on defense if you like. Also correct about the trade, but back then the Komets were not healthy and could not afford to trade two or three players for one. If, IF, they have everyone healthy, then they can afford to package 2-3 players to possibly trade for one player who might put them over the top. Because trades are so tough, that's why you may need 2-3 players to get the one you need, and this way, the Komets could finally have the depth to package two forwards (and one def) or two defensemen (and one forward) to do it. I don't think you'll be able to trade one-for-one and get what you need. A lot of times over the years we've talked about the Komets trading from need rather than strength, and this might end up being one of the few times they could trade from strength.

I have no problem keeping OC and Chwedoruk and Varone. You definitely need their skill and speed. The problem is, who comes off the lines to make a spot for them? See what I mean? Who would you take off a regular line to create a space for OC and Chwedoruk? Both of those, along with Varone, could be the sniper we always talk about. Would you make Schrock the extra forward then? I think you need his energy and defense on a regular shift. I think you start off with Mitch as an extra forward until he gets going, but once he does, a line of MacMillan, Woods and Schrock would be fascinating.

This is all pretty much just throwing something against the wall to see what sticks anyway because who knows if everybody will ever be healthy or here at the same time, but it's fun to talk about.

Right now, no one knows anything definitive about Syro, partly because I don't think Norfolk knows right now. I've heard from people who should know he could be here after Christmas, and also from people who should know that he's not coming back at all. Nobody knows.

If, IF, they have everyone healthy, on paper this should be an exceptional team if everybody is playing up to their normal standards. Who knows if that will happen?

Wed, 12/23/2009 - 12:50pm

Thanks for the response Blake. I haven't thought this through yet but I think instead of having Mac, Woods, and Shrock on the same line, I might want to put each one on a separate line. I'm not sure. Just something to think over..... To RunningKomet, it is always good to hear from you. Everyone be safe this week and have a Merry Christmas.

Hit Somebody!!!
Wed, 12/23/2009 - 8:30pm

I am saying No Syro and Woods ready to go....

Here are the latest lines from Hit Somebody!!! Get out your #2 pencils everyone....you too, Big Al.

Chaulk, Woods, Shaf
Thomas, PC Buddy, Hulako
Chewy, OC, Schrocky
Mac and Stayzer

Guy & Danko
Phillips & DeAngelis
Woodard & Rodger

Sorry, I had to leave someone off, he can't be fit under the cap as it stands now. Sorry. A choice has to be made between Bert and Stayz....I made it. Stayz is more versatile, as long as he is healthy. Warner stays as the 20th man on the roster as he can play D and F in case of injuries or if rest is needed.

Wed, 12/23/2009 - 10:28pm

If the K's can find that big tough-nosed d-man (that everyone at this level is looking for) then I think they would be set. The guys I would put on the bubble would be DeAngelis, Warner, Woodard, Varone, and Klempa... That would leave O'Conner, Schrock, Rodger, and Phillips as your 4 rookies... Warner is too injury prone so I would put Stayzer as the fill in who can play both forward and D...

Thu, 12/24/2009 - 7:29am

Verrrry Interesting! If you ever get to keep track of lines you will find out very quickly that Al is continually mixing lines up. Sometimes he does it for the entire game. I am sure he has a whole host of reasons.

Thu, 12/24/2009 - 8:08am

I cant stand his constant line juggling.....! IMO, one of the few reason why this teams has had problems scoring goals... No line cohesiveness.