The New Top Line

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The New Top Line

Postby Mad City Mike on Sat Mar 25, 2006 11:15 am

I just loved the way that Crosby, Armstrong, and Hilbert worked together last night. They had energy, and created lots of scoring chances. IMO, Hilbert looks much better with Sid than Rita did. Rita has those Morozov type skills that only seem to show up in practice. He does not have a head for the game. Hilbert does. I hope they leave these guys together the rest of the year and give Hilbert a real chance. As I said when they picked him up, I have a good feeling about his ability to work with Sid. He definitely has an offensive pedigree, which is what you need to play with an elite player.
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Postby Pitts on Sat Mar 25, 2006 11:51 am

I think we need to give it a few games before claiming Hilbert the missing link. Everyone who has had a chance to skate with Sid looks fantastic thier first few games, then disappears quite incredibly. Surovy, Oulette, Rita.....all started hot then cooled off near completely.
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Postby netwolf on Sat Mar 25, 2006 12:13 pm

Waitaminit... MCM is being optimistic and someone else is tempering it with realistic pessimism? :shock:

:lol:
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Postby Admin on Sat Mar 25, 2006 12:19 pm

netwolf wrote:Waitaminit... MCM is being optimistic and someone else is tempering it with realistic pessimism?

Bizarro LGP...
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Postby The Snapshot on Sat Mar 25, 2006 12:51 pm

Admin wrote:
netwolf wrote:Waitaminit... MCM is being optimistic and someone else is tempering it with realistic pessimism?

Bizarro LGP...


The world is coming to an end!!! ':shock:'
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Postby MrKnowNothing on Sat Mar 25, 2006 1:32 pm

Rita never really deserved to be taken off the top line. The whole team was struggling, and Therrien juggled his lines. Last night, I think I saw Rita out with them a few times, though, but it kind of sucks for him. I think he fits the profile of who they might want to look at to complete that line.

I do agree that Hilbert is playing well, but I'd rather see him as a center right now.
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Postby Pitts on Sat Mar 25, 2006 2:16 pm

I think Rita played most of the game on the top unit. Hilbert moved up there in the 3rd.
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Postby MrKnowNothing on Sat Mar 25, 2006 2:24 pm

Yeah, that's right.

Hilbert has played some left wing before, I think. I dont mind seeing him in the role, but then you lose another centerman.
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Postby netwolf on Sat Mar 25, 2006 4:08 pm

Hilbert said at one of the intermissions that he is more comfortable on the wing and hadn't played much center before coming here.
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Postby MrKnowNothing on Sat Mar 25, 2006 6:31 pm

Interesting. He seemed to be pretty good at center to me. He won some faceoffs, at least.
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Postby Ron` on Sat Mar 25, 2006 10:05 pm

Hilbert knows his best bet to stay in the NHL is to be productive with Crosby. This guy truly has a nose for the net , from what I've seen in the AHL. You also always need guys that can really can take/win draws on the top line wing too.

IMHO he was largely missused in Chicago and maligned for demanding a one way contract from Boston. I was pleasantly surprised that CP gave him a shot. I figured he was a don't touch, problem, waiver labeled guy by the old gaurd.

If he keeps his head screwed on right, continues to work hard, doesn't tick off management here in negotiations, he will be around for next year. Possibly many more. If not, his window of NHL oppurtunity is closing. He seems to understand that. Reminds me of Langer as a CP solid reclaimation project.
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Postby netwolf on Sat Mar 25, 2006 10:30 pm

MrKnowNothing wrote:Interesting. He seemed to be pretty good at center to me. He won some faceoffs, at least.


I agree, I though he looked good in the middle as well. I would not have guessed he never played center in pro hockey before.
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Postby Ron` on Sat Mar 25, 2006 10:38 pm

I saw him take draws in the AHL too, but I seem to remember him playing wing. He was a center at University of Michigan I think.
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Postby NIN on Sat Mar 25, 2006 11:32 pm

I don't like Hilbert on that line at all. Of course he is finishing chances which is more than anyone can say about Rita's play. I guess if you have to choose between Surovy, Rita, and Hilbert I would go with Rita because of the potential for greater production over the other two. Rita is not forming good line chemistry with the Croz so far but he is only a step off here and there. I think they can work through it if Rita would communicate more and be less of a "whatever you say" player. He needs to take charge of his game and let the kid know where he will be out there. Crosby is guessing with him right now.
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