GDB 17: some interesting line changes

Some interesting line up moves for tonight’s game. It looks like Craig MacTavish has decided to send two veterans a message, as Kyle Brodziak and Dustin Penner will be in the press box tonight, and Robert Nilsson is back on the second line. Thanks to Ryan Rishaug from TSN, here are the lines.

Moreau – Gagner – Hemsky
Nilsson – Horcoff – Pisani
Reddox – Cogliano – Cole
Pouliot – Boulerice – Stortini

And it looks like Roloson will start.

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The Penner benching is no surprise. He has shown virtually no emotion in any game this season. Penner has to learn to use his 240-pound frame to his advantage. Sure, he will never be a mean power forward, but he can’t be afraid to lean on an opposing player from time-to-time.

Brodziak benching can be explained by his lack of wanting to get involved physically against the Leafs. Twice in that game there were scrums that Matt Stajan and then Hagman both put a glove in his face and he didn’t react. I don’t think they expect him to be an agitator, but he can’t get pushed around by those types of players. Yesterday MacTavish said, “If a guy has zero across the scoresheet, he has to find a way to get involved. Rarely do other teams get annoyed playing us.”

Clearly that was a shot at both Penner and Brodziak.

Expect some fireworks tonight vs the Avs. With Tucker, Laperriere, Mcleod and McCormick in the lineup, you can bet that the message will be loud and clear, and the Oilers will play with some emotion and some sort of physical presence.

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