So tomorrow night is the big night. It's the start of a new journey to the playoffs, playing for the Stanley Cup. We all questioned the moves this off-season, and praised others. But tomorrow is the first step to all of our questions being answered. In this post I will give my projected lines (from what i gather will be lines based on pre-season), goal and point production plus which place the Flyers will finish in.
This line has the potential to be very effective. Carcillo will creat havoc in the corners and bust the other team's balls. Richards will be a physical force as always with a tremendous offensive upside while making room for Carter and also feeding him the puck. Carter will have to adjust to the wing, but he may actually be more productive there. He will have less defensive responsibilities and will get the opportunity to shoot the puck more.
Richards: 25-35 goals, 70-80 points Carter: 30-40 goals, 70-80 points, Carcillo: 10-20 goals, 20-30 points
We all know what this line is capable of. They basically (along with Giroux) kept us alive offensively against the Blackhawks. With the skill set of Leino and Briere, and the net-crashing ability of Hartnell, this line has all the right tools to create offense. Briere will have to continue playing like he did in the playoffs, while Leino needs to prove that the playoffs wasn't a fluke. Hartnell must have a bounce back year from his sub-par one last season.
Briere: 25-35 goals, 65-75 points Hartnell: 15-25 goals, 45-55 points, Leino: 15-25 goals, 40-50 points
This is going to be a deadly line if all goes as planned. Giroux is FINALLY going to have true finnisher on his line. Giroux and Zherdev both have tremendous hands. Giroux will set up the play and Zherdev will finnish. JVR bulked up this summer and can finally be the power-forward they wanted him to be from day one. He is better and expect him to have a break-out year.
Giroux: 15-25 goals, 50-60 points, Zherdev: 20-30 goals, 50-60 points, JVR: 15-25 goals, 40-50 points
This is going to be a fun line to watch. It will be a hard hitting and tough line to play against. It will be a bit weaker due to the losse of Ian Laperriere, but Jody Shelley seems to be fitting in nicely. Betts and Powe will be counted on as the primary penalty-killers. Shelley will provide toughness and will be able to take on guys like Colten Orr and Derek Boogard.
Betts: 0-10 goals, 10-20 points, Powe: 0-10 goals, 10-20 points, Shelley: 0-10 goals, 0-10 points
These two will once again be depended on as the number one pair. Pronger will have less of a work-load with the arrivals of the new defensemen, and Carle will have more experience with a second year with Pronger. Both will have great years.
Pronger: 0-10 goals, 40-50 points, Carle: 0-10 goals, 30-40 points
We know what to expect from these two. They will be our "second" first pair. Timonen will have less of a work-load much like Pronger, which will benefit him due to him aging. Coburn will be looking for a bounce-back year after a weak regular season. Coburn will have some confidence though after a very strong playoff performance. Coburn will also feel the pressure from Meszaros, who may challenge him for that top-four spot, which will make him try even more.
Timonen: 0-10 goals, 35-45 points, Coburn: 0-10 goals, 25-35 points
Pairing 3: Andrej Meszaros - Sean O'Donnell
Finally a thirs pairing that we can rely on. Meszaros and O'Donnell will form a very strong third pair relieving pressure from the top-four. Meszaros will be depended on to do some damge on the power play, utilizing his big shot. He knows that Coburn will be fighting him for powper play time, so he must take advantage of his opportunity. O'Donnell will be counted on for his veteran leadership. He will also provide a physical prescence on the back-end. These two will feel the need to do well to make sure they don't lose there jobs to Oskars Bartulis and Matt Walker.
Meszaros: 0-10 goals, 25-35 points, O'Donnell: 0-10 goals, 5-15 points