Can Dallas Stars’ Line Adjustments Work vs. New Jersey Devils?
The most notable change will occur on the top line where rookie sensation Valeri Nichushkin will be displaced by Rich Peverley and now the former Boston Bruins winger will move to the first scoring line next to Tyler Seguin and Jamie Benn in an attempt to create some chemistry. Benn and Seguin have already shown it during this season, and adding Peverley into the mix could be a benefit.
Nichushkin will go into the second line next to Cody Eakin and Erik Cole, two guys that have been playing better as the season advances. The third line will be formed by rookie Alex Chiasson, Vernon Fiddler and veteran Ray Whitney while the fourth trio will probably have Antoine Roussel, Shawn Horcoff and Ryan Garbutt.
It’s a shift designed to create some momentum on the offensive side of the puck, and while it’s not clear that it will work, the Stars need to try all they can to succeed. The team is not in a position to lose any more points – they are currently in the ninth place in the Western Conference but have great chances to make the postseason if they turn back to the form they had in December – and sometimes changes are good.
Coach Lindy Ruff is certainly hoping this is one of those moments, and a victory against the Devils on the road could be the spark the Stars need to get back to their early form.