Freddy Meyer just might get back in the Thrashers lineup – as a forward.
The defenseman practiced up front on Tuesday with Fredrik Modin (upper body) and Eric Boulton (hand) nursing injuries. Meyer practiced at forward one day last week when Modin and Jim Slater were held out of practice.
“That’s a possibility,” Thrashers coach Craig Ramsay said of the possibility of Meyer playing forward in Wednesday’s game against Florida. “We are going to look at bringing somebody up but I wouldn’t mind seeing Freddy up front. Freddy was playing very well for us when he got hurt and it would give us a seventh defenseman if something happened. I don’t see any reason Freddy couldn’t play up front in a game or two. He’s got the speed and the tenacity to play anywhere. If that happens, I would be pleased.”
Meyer has missed the past 10 games, four since coming off injured reserve with a mid-body injury. Meyer said he has not been told by the coaching staff if he will play forward Wednesday.
“One time with Islanders I played forward one night for like four or five minutes but a defenseman got hurt so I got recruited back to the back end,” Meyer said. “I haven’t officially played a full game at forward.
“It’s different. As a defenseman you see the whole play and take the whole play in. At forward, you are in the mix for the whole play. There is a bit of an adjustment period. I will go out there, work hard, skate hard and keep it simple.”
Ramsay said he will speak to general manager Rick Dudley to make a final lineup decision. However, he thinks Meyer is capable of making the switch for a game or two.
“I don’t think it’s all that hard,” Ramsay said. “The defensive zone coverage, he should be good at. It’s a matter of coming back and stopping and not thinking you are a defenseman and going back to deep. He has to know when to stop away from the net rather than at the net. Overall, he battles so wall play shouldn’t be an issue. He can skate up and down the ice so that shouldn’t be an issue. He can score a bit. I think it would be fun.”
During Tuesday’s practice, Meyer skated on the left wing on a line with Alexander Burmistrov and Chris Thorburn.