Second Line Woes

I’ve said consistently that Naslund should not have been playing with the Sedins, and be put back with Morrison to help create a dynamic second line.  It’s a similar approach to how they handle Alfredsson in Ottawa.

With that in mind, I was excited by the fact that Bulis was moved onto a line with Morrison & Naslund.  Bulis proved himself as a bit of a scorer last year, netting himself 20 goals.  And we’ve been watching Morrison & Naslund for years working their magic.

But after a few games, and a few points, there still seems to be some issues getting this line clicking on all cylinders.

Naslund and Morrison seem to know where each other will be, but Bulis doesn’t have a clue.  He stops skating at inopportune times, holds on to the puck when Naslund has found a way to get himself open, and isn’t looking for the pass when it’s coming off his line mates sticks.

I had first thought that it would just be a matter of time to get some chemistry and have them become a productive scoring line.

But after watching them at the game last night, I think it’s more than that.  I had never really paid that much attention to Bulis before, but what I saw last night is how small he was.

And then it became clear.  It’s not just that Bulis hasn’t built that chemistry with Naslund & Morrison, but also that he doesn’t make as much space for them as Bertuzzi had done.

Being that Pyatt has proven to be such a great fit on the Sedin line, it’s imperitive to now put their attention to the second line and get it sorted out.  Unfortunately, the parts required to make it work may not even be on the team.

Nonis should be looking hard for something.  With the salary cap, it’s going to be tough to orchestrate a trade, but the team needs him to work a bit of magic and find a way to get them someone to play with.

There ability to succeed this postseason may depend on it.

The Chief Canuck

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