Changing the deck chairs on Titanic?

TERRY JONES -- Edmonton Sun

, Last Updated: 8:46 AM ET

INNSBRUCK, Austria -- If it doesn't work, then Marc Habscheid will have done nothing more than change the deck chairs on the Titanic. If it does, then Canada will go on to the medal round.

After what we've watched in the last week, what's he got to lose?

The Team Canada coach, who moved Ryan Smyth back to the national grind line with Kris Draper and Kirk Maltby and Shane Doan up to the second line to try to get Dany Heatley going a week ago, has put Smyth back with Heatley and Brendan Morrison for today's crossover quarter-final elimination game against Slovakia.

"I have no idea," said Draper of why the coach went back to the lines he came to the tournament with in the first place.

"Maybe he has a matchup in mind."

Canada has some top talent to shut down in this game. The Slovaks have major questions on defence and with their goaltending, but nobody questions their offensive abilities.

"They have a lot of talent out there," says Draper.

"It'll definitely be a difficult kind of game defensively. But I'm looking forward to it.

"These are the games you look forward to playing. These are the kind of challenges you look forward to meeting."

Habscheid said there's no major mystery when you go against Slovakia.

"They're quick and dangerous with a high level of skill."

He said they actually made the move late in the game against Ukraine the night before.

"We put Smyth out on the power play with Heatley and Morrison late in the game and liked the way they played."

Morrison said he thinks the change works for this game for both lines.

"Smyth is a real physical guy who is good down low. We have to get traffic in front and get mucking and grinding goals."

For his part, Smyth says it's part of playing for Team Canada.

"Wherever they put me, that's where I'll play. All the lines have to have it going and capitalize on our chances.

"For me it means going from penalty killing to the power play. One of my assets is being in front of the net on the power play."


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