"Alex has good size, a real strong skater," head coach Alain Vigneault said. "We've seen him this year. He's played over 20 games with our team. He has that ability to get in on the forecheck, real strong skater, so ... if we do make some changes, that's what he can bring."
Some coaches would never change a lineup that's up 2-0 in a series, but Vigneault isn't superstitious that way.
"Well, I think throughout the playoffs, we've always put the 20 skaters that we felt would give us the best chance to win on that night," he said. "Throughout the season, we did the same thing. Sometimes you got to make some adjustments. Sometimes players are off their game a little bit or not on top, and you need to make quick adjustments. If we do make some changes tonight, we'll find out at the game."
Sharks' line changes
San Jose's forward lines have largely been the same the entire playoffs except when Ryane Clowe was injured and missed Game 6 in Detroit last round. But head coach Todd McLellan hinted Friday morning that he might make changes.
"We're still discussing them," McLellan said. "We could shuffle things up a little bit."
Jason Demers was expected to miss a third straight game, and the loss of the young blueliner has had an impact on the Sharks.
"Our belief in Jason and his ability is very strong," McLellan said. "He's played a very key role in our team play this year. He's an offensive guy with very good eyes and very good hands, thinks the game creatively. [Kent] Huskins is a different player. When you put Kent in, it changes. He's a defender. He's more about staying at home and playing in a smaller sheet of ice than the bigger sheet. So it does change the dynamic somewhat. You have to ask others to do a little bit more in offensive situations. But it's not the end of the world."