Ramblings: Krug and Carlo injured; Tuch setback; Detroit’s top line; goal differentials – March 10

Michael Clifford

2020-03-10

The big news from Monday is that the four major North American sports currently playing their regular season or ramping up to their regular season, including the NHL, are temporarily barring reporters from entering the dressing rooms post-practice or game over fears of COVID-19 transmission. It’s probably not the last we’ve heard from the major sports as this virus continues to pop up.

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Both Torey Krug and Brandon Carlo both missed practice on Monday, and coach Bruce Cassidy thinks both will miss their game on Tuesday. He did say they expect Carlo back later this week, but with Krug out of the lineup, Matt Grzelcyk is likely to assume the mantle on the top PP unit. If you have daily transactions in an H2H playoff format, this might be a good time to grab Grzelcyk.

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A good read from Harman Dayal at The Athletic about why the Canucks don't quite trust Jake Virtanen with a top-6 role. Virtanen is a guy I've reversed course on over the last couple years as his underlying metrics have shown signs of good productivity, and he's on the verge of his first 20-goal season. I don't think it's reasonable for Virtanen to get top PP minutes with the forward talent this team has, but even more even-strength minutes would help here. I hope he gets them sooner rather than later.

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Dobber had a small bit on Tyler Bertuzzi in his Ramblings yesterday and I wanted to talk more about that right now.

The line of Bertuzzi-Larkin-Mantha has been excellent together over the last couple years, but if we break them down into pairings (Bertuzzi-Larkin, Bertuzzi-Mantha, Larkin-Mantha), the common link seems to be that Mantha is really the large wooden spoon that stirs the cauldron. That worries me, because if