Justin Williams’ injury, Scott Parse’s promotion and Wayne Simmonds’ emergence have changed the dynamics of the Kings considerably, and it has had a trickle-down impact on Teddy Purcell, who switched lines and also switched positions, from left wing to his natural right wing. It’s a subtle change, but Purcell talked today about switching sides of the ice…
PURCELL: “I grew up, most of my life, playing right wing, but I played some left wing down in Manchester, and started off up here on left wing too. There’s advantages and disadvantages of both, but I feel comfortable playing both. I’m happy to play wherever they put me.”
(on what the major differences are…)
PURCELL: “Just like the control breakout. Your patterns are a little different. Just stuff off the set faceoffs that are just a little different than the left side, getting pucks off the boards in your own zone and battling. They can be major things, but it becomes kind of basic once you have played both and you kind of know where to be. It’s not like going from wing to center. It’s not a huge change.”
It will be interesting to see what happens when Williams returns, particularly since Terry Murray indicated today that Williams will go back to the first line. It seems highly unlikely that the Parse-Stoll-Purcell line will stay intact, but here’s what Purcell said today about his current line…
PURCELL: “We like to get in on the forecheck and create loose pucks. The last couple games, we’ve had some pretty good offensive-zone time, cycling and reading off each other and getting some chances. Stolly had big goals there in the last couple games, so it’s good to contribute and help find that secondary scoring that we’re looking for. Hopefully we can keep it going with two big games against two tough teams. That’s what we’re looking forward to.”
What do you think should happen when Williams returns, assuming the first line will return to being Smyth-Kopitar-Williams. Who goes the fourth line? Who gets scratched? If he has another strong game tomorrow, it will be hard to justify taking Parse out of the lineup. Purcell has no goals and two assists in his last nine games. What do you think?