Taking a look at some of the more interesting (and fantasy impactful) line combos from the Western Conference…
Every season there are some interesting line combinations that come out of training camp, even in situations where no one thought there was any possible reason to make a change. A spot on the right line can make all the difference, it is the only explanation for Keith Jones putting up 49 points in 66 games for the Flyers. That spot alongside John Leclair and Eric Lindros worked out really well as what amounted to his last hurrah before Mikael Renberg joined the ‘Legion of Doom’. For a more recent example check the career of Alex Burrows. The point being that finding a player who is getting a chance on a top scoring line can result in a career year. Ask Jonathan Cheechoo.
Alex Steen – Paul Stastny – Vladimir Tarasenko
When the Blues traded TJ Oshie for Troy Brouwer and other assets this summer no one foresaw the domino effect that it would have on the rest of the lineup. After their dominance last season there was never any reason to expect that Hitchcock would deem it necessary to break up the ‘STL’ line but that is exactly what Hitch did. The new top line has the potential to do huge things though, as Tarasenko was the driving force behind the ‘STL’ line. The Blues scored 3.62 goals per 60 minutes (GF60) at even strength when he was playing as a part of the line and 3.42 GF60 when he was not part of the line.
Stastny figures to be the biggest beneficiary of this switch given the success he had with MacKinnon during the 2013/14 season when they were on the ice for 3.59 GF60 together. That proven success with a speedy dynamic offensive player bodes well for Stastny playing with Tarasenko. As for Steen the Blues scored 4.99 GF60 in the 200 minutes he skated with Tarasenko