With Alex Goligoski out for a month with a broken thumb, Dallas Stars head coach Glen Gulutzan needed to tweak his power play lineup. Goligoksi has been paired with Robidas on the PP unit with the Ribeiro line, while Trevor Daley and Sheldon Souray comprise the other points on the unit with the Benn trio. Saturday night in Detroit Gulutzan put a seemingly unlikely candidate out there with Robidas: Toby Petersen.
The coaching staff has faith in Petersen's ability and it was brought up this morning that defensive assistant Paul Jerrard was in Iowa with the then 'Stars' when Toby was, and has seen him work on the point.
"Yeah, he [Jerrard] was in Iowa and I was on the point in the minors and I'm not sure how the decision came about, but I'm excited about the opportunity and happy to be there," said Petersen. "Robi's so good at making reads that if I do find myself in trouble he'll help, he'll talk me through it."
On any NHL level power play experience...
"Little bit in Pittsburgh, a little bit in Edmonton, so I have a little experience in the NHL (at the point) but mostly in the minors."
Toby knows from experience as a killer in the NHL that Gulutzan's power play scheme that allows the d-men to drift down into the slot can be an effective weapon.
"It is intersting. It's a little unique. The d-men get in there and as a killer I know that causes a lot of confusion. It's hard to defend and I think this unit can have a lot of success."
The Toby Petersen/Stephane Robidas power play did not score in Detroit on Saturday but had only one real extended look, as the Wings gave the Stars just two power play opportunities. The Benn line scored on the first. Part of what hampered the Petersen experiment on Saturday was that Mike Ribeiro lost both PP faceoffs for which those two were on the ice.
All of this is made that much more interesting by the fact that Philip Larsen will be watching from the press box again tonight, newly re-called from the Texas Stars. He would seem a natural fit to slide into this role, but the team has said they prefer to play the six veteran d-men for the time being.
What do you think? Should Philip Larsen be here if he's not going to play and fill this void? (To be fair, he'll very likely play this weekend)