So now that the season is finally about to get underway, I’ve been giving a lot of thought to what the Flyers lines will or should look like. I see Line 1 with Hartnell, Giroux and Voracek because I think they will produce a lot of points in scoring but will balance it out well with some good fights and some quality time in the box. For Line 2 I personally would like to see Schenn, Courturier and Simmonds although the veteran Briere will most certainly have the first spot over Couturier. Usually the top two lines play against each other and Couturier is an excellent defensive center. He did a great job of shutting down Malkin in the playoffs last year which is why I can see him as a second line rather than a third line center. But I don’t think that Laviolette will see it my way, at least not at first. Courturier will be on the third line most likely with Read and Fedotenko. The fourth line will be Talbot, Rinaldo, and I would like to see Eric Wellwood as the third member of that line. Wellwood is fast and skilled and will bring energy to the fourth line.
As for the defense, my first defensive pairing would be Timonen and Grossman. I would like to see Grossman because he is a solid defender and I like the idea of splitting your best two defenders, Timonen and Coburn, so that each pair will have a steady mix of muscle and skill. Coburn and Schenn is my next pair but when Meszaros returns he will bump Schenn to my third pairing. My third defensive match would be Lilja and Gervais at this point because Gustafsson, Bourdon, and Meszaros are out due to different injuries. I hope that the Flyers can acquire a new defender or trade for someone at the deadline to solidify the defense before the playoffs.
As the season goes on, players will get healthier and the offensive lines and the defensive pairs will find their chemistry. I am excited to see how the lines get mixed and who ends up producing the most for the team.