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Sutter May Move to Wing

Monday, 10.26.2009 / 1:05 PM ET / Tracking the Storm
By Paul Branecky
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Sutter May Move to Wing
Coach Paul Maurice said that Brandon Sutter’s NHL future may not lie exclusively at center, a position he’s played for the bulk of his career up until this point.

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Although the coach said that Sutter did a good job in his first NHL game of the season on Saturday, he would prefer to have Jussi Jokinen centering the third line on a more long-term basis.

”He can play all three positions and were comfortable with that in the short term,” said Maurice of Jokinen. “But when we’ve moved him to the middle of the ice, the few times this year that it’s happened, he’s played very, very well.”

Depending on what happens with Stephane Yelle in the coming days, whether it’s a reassignment, a waiver claim by another team or nothing at all, there could be space for Sutter to center the fourth line as early as Wednesday. Or, he may play on the wing, an experiment carried out for one practice last season but never since.

”I think Brandon Sutter is a guy that can play more than one position,” said Maurice. “I think he’s going to need to if he ends up playing the fourth-line role now or three years from now. He’s going to need more ice time than just that. In order to do that, he’s got to play more than one position and get out of the middle.

“We may move him around,” Maurice continued. “I don’t think we’ll lose anything immediately in doing that, but we may gain something down the road with him having experienced another position.”

Sutter had a hectic weekend, first playing for Albany on Friday night before experiencing weather-related flight setbacks on his way to Minneapolis/St.  Paul.

“I had some delays, and then I pulled in about half an hour before warm ups," he said.  "It was a long day, but I just battled through it, came to the rink, went and played a game.”

It didn’t help that he was using another player’s sticks since his didn’t arrive in time, or that he received a high stick to the face on his very first shift, leaving him with a clear diagonal mark underneath his left eye.

“Welcome back,” said Sutter. “It woke me up a little bit, so it was probably good for me.”

Sounds a little bit like what happened to Tuomo Ruutu in his Hurricanes debut, although Sutter’s injury wasn’t quite as gruesome.

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EASTERN CONFERENCE
  TEAM GP W L OT GF GA PTS
1 p - WSH 82 56 18 8 252 193 120
2 x - PIT 82 48 26 8 245 203 104
3 y - FLA 82 47 26 9 239 203 103
4 x - NYR 82 46 27 9 236 217 101
5 x - NYI 82 45 27 10 232 216 100
6 x - TBL 82 46 31 5 227 201 97
7 x - PHI 82 41 27 14 214 218 96
8 x - DET 82 41 30 11 211 224 93
9 BOS 82 42 31 9 240 230 93
10 CAR 82 35 31 16 198 226 86
11 OTT 82 38 35 9 236 247 85
12 NJD 82 38 36 8 184 208 84
13 MTL 82 38 38 6 221 236 82
14 BUF 82 35 36 11 201 222 81
15 CBJ 82 34 40 8 219 252 76
16 TOR 82 29 42 11 198 246 69

STATS

2015-2016 REGULAR SEASON
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
J. Skinner 82 28 23 -2 51
V. Rask 80 21 27 -6 48
J. Staal 82 20 28 6 48
E. Lindholm 82 11 28 -23 39
J. Faulk 64 16 21 -22 37
J. Nordstrom 71 10 14 1 24
A. Nestrasil 55 9 14 4 23
R. Nash 64 9 13 -5 22
N. Hanifin 79 4 18 -14 22
J. Slavin 63 2 18 1 20
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
C. Ward 23 17 10 .909 2.41
E. Lack 12 14 6 .901 2.81