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Lecavalier has great game following demotion to fourth line

Mar 29, 2014, 11:31 AM EDT

PHILADELPHIA, PA - MARCH 28: Vincent Lecavalier #40 of the Philadelphia Flyers is congratulated by teammates after scoring during the first period against the Toronto Maple Leafs at Wells Fargo Center on March 28, 2014 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Getty Images

Vincent Lecavalier seemed upset when he found himself paired up with Zac Rinaldo and Adam Hall on the fourth line during Philadelphia’s Friday morning skate, but the move worked in last night’s 4-2 victory over Toronto.

Flyers coach Craig Berube was very pleased with Lecavalier’s line and the 33-year-old forward, who also shifted from the wing to center, admitted that he felt more comfortable playing up the middle.

“I have to give credit to my teammates,” Lecavalier said, according to the Philadelphia Inquirer. “We were close (to scoring) a few times.”

As a line they didn’t find the back of the net, but Lecavalier scored on a one-timer during Philadelphia’s first power play of the game:

“I didn’t even see the shot,” teammate Wayne Simmonds remarked. “Normally I have time to get to the front of the net. I wasn’t even halfway there. It was in and out before I even got there, so it was an unbelievable shot.”

Like Berube, Simmonds was impressed with how well Lecavalier responded to his assignment as the team’s fourth-line center.

It remains to be seen if Lecavalier’s strong performance will lead to the lines getting shaken up again, but either way, if Berube’s goal was to spark him, then it looks like he succeeded.

  1. chrisk61 - Mar 29, 2014 at 12:08 PM

    i think lecav’s back injury and recovery may have affected his play. but more directly, berube may be at fault by putting lecav on a wing when he is a career centerman.

    it is one gm, but lecav looks better as a centerman. keep him there. he won’t displace giroux on 1st line, and 3rd line with couturier centering read and raffl looks very effective right now. so perhaps lecav and be switched on and off with schenn on 2nd line depending on how schenn continues to perform.

    i think that is the bottom line…it is now a competition between schenn and lecav to center the 2nd line.

    • kaptaanamerica - Mar 29, 2014 at 3:24 PM

      Leave him on the fourth line.flyers would have strength right down the middle against any team and could roll four lines.

  2. raoool - Mar 29, 2014 at 12:24 PM

    he had a ‘great game’ – in comparison to most of his (often wretched) games this year – but wasn’t like he dominated. And while he may be past dominating, it is good to see a flash of sniper return.
    Gonna need everybody kicking in to go anywhere if/when they get to the playoffs.

    • macjacmccoy - Mar 29, 2014 at 12:57 PM

      He was the best player for the Flyers for the 1st quarter of the season imo. Then he got hurt and spent sometime on the DL (or whatever its called in hockey). He took a lot longer to get back to where he was at the beginning of the year then one would hope, but since the Olympic break he looks like he’s nearly there. I say keep his minutes down on the 4th line until about a week before the playoffs to give him time to rev back up. Then hopefully he will be at full speed when the post season starts.

      • mcphillthy - Mar 29, 2014 at 9:02 PM

        No way. Simmonds has been the most consistent player this season. Even when we sucked balls in the beginning Simmonds was still being Simmonds.

  3. joey4id - Mar 29, 2014 at 1:09 PM

    Is it really a surprise to the Flyers that Vinny would feel more comfortable at center? Perhaps they should be plugged in to PHT where some of the good hockey minds are posting. 😊

    jb8588 – Mar 28, 2014 at 12:31 PM
    Guess Berube hasn’t thought that maybe Vinny isn’t producing as much because he’s playing LW…he has never played wing in his pro career before thi

  4. crazemastercraze - Mar 29, 2014 at 1:51 PM

    Here comes the armchair flyers anylists.

    • phillyphanatic77 - Mar 29, 2014 at 2:12 PM

      Why are you here analyzing the Flyers fans? So we’re not allowed to comment on the team we watch all the time? It’s a hockey forum where hockey fans come to express opinions. Every fanbase does it.

      • narfmoo12 - Mar 29, 2014 at 3:57 PM


  5. thesportsjudge - Mar 29, 2014 at 2:03 PM

    Wouldn’t he also most likely be playing against other 4th lines if he himself is on the 4th line?

  6. flyboystransport - Mar 29, 2014 at 4:20 PM

    He isnt good enough defensively to be a regular center anymore. All his power play points are coming as a winger so im not seeing what his issue is but hey the move provides depth especially if schen struggles again

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