Mar 11, 2014; Pittsburgh, PA, USA; Washington Capitals head coach Adam Oates (middle) talks to Washington Capitals left wing Dustin Penner (17) on the bench against the Pittsburgh Penguins during the second period at the CONSOL Energy Center. Mandatory Credit: Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

Adam Oates and His Line Choices

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The Capitals have a lot on the line over these next few games, being 1 point behind the Columbus Blue Jackets who also have a game in hand, they are all virtually must wins.

The return of Mikhail Grabovski seemed to give the team a little bit of a boost in the latter stages in last nights shoot out loss against the Nashville Predators, while starting Grabo on the fourth line to ease him in was not a bad decision by the end of the game he was paired with Ovechkin and taking most of the draws, so why was Jay Beagle still being shifted with the pair!  Beagle and Ovechkin have not produced while being partnered together on what would be considered one of the top two lines for the Caps, leaving the decision to continue shifting them together in question.

Evgeny Kuznetsov has been very impressive in a small sample size and has even been tested at center at times, including last night when Grabo made the jump up, Kuznetsov got a bump down into the 4th line C position decreasing his on ice time.  After the goal he scored with just seconds left against the Kings you would think that would be a player you want on the ice down the stretch of games.

Looking to the future hopes of a Kuznetov-Grabo-Ovie line would be nice to go along with the Mojo-Backstrom-Brouwer line, although Penner may still be a better option on that LW.  Kuznetsov at the center position will be interesting to watch moving forward, the move there next season would open up cap space to make the Capitals possible players trying to bring the last pieces of a championship team together.

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Tags: Adam Oates Alex Ovechkin Evgeny Kuznetsov Washington Capitals

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