I sound like a broken record, but this is getting absurd John. STOP CHANGING THE LINES EVERY SHIFT!!!!!!!!!! Let’s analogize. All women have certain things in common (and I don’t mean physical stuff). The need for attention, wanting to be right even when they are not, and so forth. But all women also have attributes that are uniquely theirs. Maybe it’s what makes them laugh. Or a love of Hallmark movies. Or food allergies. And certainly what turns them on (or off). To find that special someone you need not only to love those idiosyncrasies but also master dealing with them. Not that I’ve ever been one of these guys…but dating multiple women at once is incredibly difficult because you have to remember ALL of their individual characteristics and which go with which woman, and master them. I don’t know about you, but I have a hard enough time remembering things about my one woman, and we’ve been together for years.
The same thing applies to hockey lines. Chemistry comes form being together with the same two guys for a long stretch of time. Does my RW like to cycle low? Does my center usually drive hard to the net or peel out for a pass? Where does my LW like to pull up for a slapper or fake it and pass diagonally? And thousands of other nuances. But when you have to remember 6 different teammates’ idiosyncrasies you are sure to miss many and not be as comfortable with the ones you do remember. The chemistry just isn’t there. There’s a reason the overwhelming number of coaches in NHL history keep their lines together for long stretches, and don’t mix them up on a whim every shift. It’s called consistency.
Ironically, Torts complains his team is not consistent. Torts wants his team to reflect his leadership. Then lead appropriately and give them consistent lines for a few games at least. Let Callahan learn what Jokinen likes to do. Or Christensen and Gaborik. Or Anisimov and Avery. Lines are not picked on a slot machine. Hopefully it’s not too late for this season. But even if it is, go with this approach anyway. It will yield benefits for next season. Hate to burst anyone’s bubble, but we’re not making it out of the first round even if we luck into a playoff spot.