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Tuesday Morning Update

Another day, another lineup shuffle out here at KCI. I guess that's what happens when you've won three of 17 games and are in dead last in the NHL.

The mood is pretty somber. Coach Hanlon is skating them pretty hard, probably the hardest I've seen this season. Kolzig has already wigged out at least once. Not sure what happened, but he was kicking the goal post repeatedly. A moment ago, they started scrimmaging, full-speed, full-contact, with a running clock.

Here's what the combos look like as of right now:

Ovechkin-Kozlov-Clark
Fleischmann-Nylander-Semin
Pettinger-Backstrom-Laich
Brashear-Gordon-Steckel

Bradley has been rotating on the Backstrom line.

The 'D' pairings have also gotten a bit of a shakeup:

Poti-Green
Morrisonn-Schultz
Erskine-Pothier
Eminger-Jurcina

Update:Lots of today's practice was spent working on making crisper line changes. Players said that's been a major problem in recent games: guys talking minute long shifts, losing focus late on those long shifts because they are out of gas, then committing a turnover, or being forced to come off at exactly the wrong moment.

No one would name names, but the stat sheet tells the story. The average shift should be between 45 seconds, 50 seconds tops. Last night, Ovechkin averaged the longest shifts at 1:03; Nylander was second at 1:00, Kozlov was out there an average of :58.

By Tarik El-Bashir  |  November 20, 2007; 11:49 AM ET
 
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