And he can’t be happy about it. Per Kuflan:
Babcock will stick with the same lineup that won against Nashville, which means Jiri Hudler is likely to be a healthy scratch a second straight game.
“I’m not 100 percent certain, but at this point it’s Huds,” Babcock said
I’m sort of stuck on this one. Hudler doesn’t deserve to be sat. He’s too talented and hasn’t played that badly and I want to see him getting ice time to get back into the game. His upside really is 25-35 goals and is a streakly player that needs to be playing to get going.
At the same time, Abby showed he deserved to be in the lineup last week. He had that Dallas Drake aspect about him that the team is missing. So who should sit?
I think it really should be Miller, as unfair as it is for him. He’s been playing well on the PK (very well actually) and decently well at even strength for a fourth liner. Yet, I think we could replace him without losing much. We have players that can fill in on the PK in his spot and Hudler brings 100% more offensively than Miller. As sorry as it is for him, I think it has got to be him in this situation.
I know the easy answer is Modano, but I don’t agree because: 1) as A2Y has explained, Babcock isn’t going to sit him this early, no matter what; 2) there is nobody that can replace him on the point on the #1 PP without Raffy in the lineup; 3) is 9 games enough to really judge him yet? He does deserve a little more respect than that. At 35 games in I think we can, but 9 is a little too early.
Either way though, Happy won’t be sitting long, as he’ll be playing Friday. Where he’ll be in the lineup, though, is anyone’s guess:
“When I say that (Hudler will play) I put myself in a bad spot,” Babcock said. “I have no idea (who’ll sit). “I’ll be like you and just watch.”