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Chris Kreider’s Injury Forces Rangers To Juggle Lines

from Larry Brooks of the New York Post,

Vigneault was planning on just about mixing it all up for Tuesday’s match against the Canucks even in the wake of the Blueshirts’ 5-0 rout of the downtrodden Oilers on Sunday. The coach went so far as to return Brad Richards to left wing for the first time since Dec. 20 in conjunction with moving Carl Hagelin off the Richards-St. Louis unit into the spot that belonged to Kreider with Derek Stepan and Rick Nash, while also shifting Moore into a top-nine playmaker’s role.

“That’s just me being me,” Vigneault said following Monday’s practice here in which he rolled out his new combinations that included a fourth line of Carcillo and Dorsett flanking Boyle.

Actually, it was more like Vigneault being John Tortorella, the Vancouver coach who was famous — or infamous — for his constant line-shuffling when he roamed behind the Rangers bench for the last four-plus seasons.

The concept behind moving Hagelin into Kreider’s spot that he held from Dec. 15 through March 21 — a span in which the line was intact for 33 straight games and 39 of 40 — is to replicate the rookie’s speed and forecheck ability. But Hagelin lacks Kreider’s strength, physicality and ability to get to the front of the net and plant himself there as a screen. In other words, same speed but very different player.

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Filed in: NHL Teams, New York Rangers, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

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Paul Kukla founded Kukla’s Korner in 2005 and the site has since become the must-read site on the ‘net for all the latest happenings around the NHL.

From breaking news to in-depth stories around the league, KK Hockey is updated with fresh stories all day long and will bring you the latest news as quickly as possible.

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