TORONTO -- GM/coach Pat Quinn has unveiled his plan to get to the most out of his two most dominate offensive players -- put them together.
Mats Sundin and Alex Mogilny will start the season on the same line and be given enough time to gel. The two played together on the power play last season but played with one another sparingly at even strength .
Sundin is thrilled with the idea of playing an extended period with the gifted Russian.
| Tucker is the odds on favourite to play left wing with Mogilny and Sundin. |
Graig Abel Photography
"It takes a while to get in harmony with each other and know each other's patterns," Sundin said. "That goes for anyone and that's just the way it is. I like Alex as a player, there is no doubt. I would like (to play with Mogilny)."
That being said there's still an open spot on their left wing. Candidates include Darcy Tucker, Shayne Corson, Nik Antropov and possibly Jonas Hoglund but Quinn is leaning towards a physical player to compliment his big guns.
Tucker will most likely audition on the line Wednesday night against the Montreal Canadiens, the first of a home-and-home series with their original six rival. You can catch the action live on Leafs TV, 7:30 pm.
"I'm not going to put a lot pressure on myself to get goals and assists," Tucker said. "I am going to put a lot of pressure on myself to help us win. If that means scoring goals and getting points, so be it. If that means blocking shots or taking hits to make plays, that will have to happen."
"Pat expects me to go out and play hard, and if the other stuff comes, it comes."
No matter who wins the job on the left side, Quinn wants to give Mogilny and Sundin the opportunity to excel together simply because he believes it can happen.
"I think when you have a guy like Mats, that's a problem because he does carry the puck a lot," said Quinn. "Alex can play a possession game or he can play the give-and-go game because he can take the puck because he is in the right spot. He can play with Mats."
"You would think if they had time to work together, they could do a little bit better."
Other line combos that may play together Wednesday are Alyn McCauley between Shayne Corson and Mikael Renberg; Robert Reichel centring Jonas Hoglund and Tie Domi; and Travis Green with Nik Antropov and Tom Fitzgerald.