We haven't seen those top two line combos since the first games following the Ponikarovsky trade. But wait! There's changes afoot on the back end, too.
There's a lot of thoughts that come to mind. First of which, is the fact that the Elias-Clarkson breakup lasted all of one game. I still would have liked to see what Elias could do with Kovy over time, but the Devils don't have a ton of time to wait for their first line to start clicking. Poni and Kovy have solid chemistry and having Zajac and Poni next to him will help Kovy maintain his "puppet master" role, controlling the play and shooting when he sees an opportunity. I'm intrigued by the third and fourth lines. I'm curious to see whether Kostopoulos can duplicate Steve Bernier's role on the CBGB line, allowing the Devils to legitimately roll all four lines at any time, instead of having to hide one or two players after the first period. The the thing that concerns me is Loktionov's offensive potential being somewhat wasted on the third line, but that said, it's hard to prioritize him over guys like Zajac and Henrique, who should have plenty of chances to create and finish chances in between Batman and Robin.
As for the defense, well, I'm happy to see Harrold finally get a shot. For one, it's about time the Devils injected some sort of "fresh legs" into their defensive corps. Secondly, he can't play much worse than what we've seen from some of the Devils' defensemen over the past few games. That said, sitting Larsson seems short-sighted to me. No, he hasn't been perfect, but he's a better play than either Volchenkov or Tallinder. That Salvador-Volchenkov pairing terrifies me already. All I can hope is this is a situation of DeBoer wanting Larsson to take a rest and see things from a different angle to potentially correct some of the mistakes he's making on a consistent basis. If this turns into another Larsson Watch, oh boy.