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DeBoer shuffles lines to spark offense

Henrique to center Parise and Kovalchuk

Wednesday, 11.2.2011 / 11:25 AM ET / News
By Eric Marin
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DeBoer shuffles lines to spark offense
Adam Henrique will center Zach Parise and Ilya Kovalchuk tonight when the Devils host Toronto. 

Peter DeBoer is hoping to jumpstart an offense that's averaging two goals per game.

"We're going to move things around until we get the right fit. Kovy's going to play right, Parise left and Henrique in the middle," DeBoer said.

Parise had one goal while centering Kovalchuk for the past three games.

"We're not scoring enough, so we had to change something up," Parise said. "We'll see. [Henrique] is a good player, he's played well this season. Hopefully we can find some chemistry, the three of us."

Though Parise returns to the left side, DeBoer didn't rule out giving him another shot at the middle. Injuries to Travis Zajac and Jacob Josefson have forced DeBoer to get creative at center.

"I think Zach did great job there considering it's not his natural position," DeBoer said. "I've got no problem putting him back there now after seeing him there. I don't think he has a problem playing there. We're just changing some things around."

Kovalchuk will get another look at right wing after starting there last season. He has two goals and four assists on the season, but has been held off the scoresheet in three straight contests.

"My conversations with him this year were all positive," DeBoer said. "He's embracing the idea."

Henrique, a rookie, picked up his first NHL point with an assist Thursday in Phoenix, and has come close on several occasions to notching his first goal.

Henrique made the team out of camp, but was sent down to Albany (AHL) after two games. He's made four appearances since being recalled on Oct. 22.

"He's worked his way up," said DeBoer. "Guys work their way up and down the lineup. Adam worked his way down to the American League early in the camp and he's worked his way back to the second line. Some other guys started high in the lineup and have worked their way down."

Other changes at today's morning skate had Ryan Carter centering Mattias Tedenby and David Clarkson, and Brad Mills centering Cam Janssen and Nick Palmieri. Patrik Elias remained with Petr Sykora and Dainius Zubrus.

Martin Brodeur returns after missing six games with a bruised right shoulder and will start versus the Leafs.