Isles split up John Tavares and Matt Moulson for Game 2
PITTSBURGH - -- Jack Capuano decided to juggle his top forward lines for the first time in a long, long while, splitting up the near-permanent duo of John Tavares and Matt Moulson. If the Isles continue to play the way they did in Game 2, those two may see only power-play time together in the near future.
Moulson moved to the wing with Frans Nielsen and Kyle Okposo, while Josh Bailey took the spot on Tavares' left, with Brad Boyes on the right. Both lines worked well together, with Moulson getting the primary assist on Okposo's game-winner and Bailey helping to free Tavares for a team-high six shots on goal.
"You have to adjust to guys' tendencies, but you can never be 100 percent comfortable in the playoffs," Moulson said. He also had the opening goal of the game, a power-play goal with Tavares assisting. "It's good to switch it up,'' Moulson said. "We needed a little spark."
Capuano said he'd been debating such a move down the stretch of the regular season, when neither of the top two lines produced much offense in the final week.
Ullstrom, Carkner in
David Ullstrom played his first game with the Isles in nearly two months, suiting up in place of Marty Reasoner. Ullstrom had an assist on Colin McDonald's second-period goal and delivered five hits in 10:10 of ice time.
Matt Carkner subbed in for Thomas Hickey on defense, giving Capuano a little more size in the defensive zone. Carkner played a team-low 8:45 as the Isles went primarily with five defensemen.