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SHARKS HEAD COACH BOB BOUGHNER FIRES A WARNING SHOT AT LABANC, MEIER FOR ''HORRIBLE'' PLAY

APR 18, 2021  (10H02)      MIKE ARMENTI
Given some of the tough decisions they have to make, I think you could put NHL head coach among the most stressful job titles one can hold.

For San Jose Sharks bench boss Bob Boughner, his job certainly wasn't made easy by a pair of his top offensive players on Saturday, as their "horrible" play in the first period led to Boughner making the decision to demote each of them to the team's fourth line.

Down 3-1 after the first period, due in part to the play of Timo Meier and Kevin Labanc, Boughner felt it was time to send a message that irresponsible and lackluster play would not be acceptable under his rule in San Jose and he did just that by taking two of his top-six wingers and burying them on the fourth line, despite being down in the contest.

"They didn't deserve to play in the top six or the top nine for that matter. I just made the decision after the first period, if you're not ready to play, put both those guys on the same line and let them try to figure it out down there."

"Earning ice time" is definitely not a new phenomenon, as we're seeing several notable names around the league sliding down their team's depth chart, as they have struggled to put it together this season - Buffalo's Jeff Skinner being a prime example.

Both Labanc and Meier have 25 points on the season, good for fifth in scoring on a Sharks team that is still very much struggling to find its identity.

Despite being relegated to fourth line duty, Labanc did end up crawling his way out of Boughner's dog house, ending the night with 17:34 in ice-time, and producing a third period assist in a 5-2 loss. Meier managed just 13:29 of ice-time in the contest, well below his season average, and drawing a blank on the score sheet.

At this point, you'd have to imagine that a healthy scratch could be on the way for Meier after managing just 4 points over his last 12 games.

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NHL STATS
SEASON
2020-2021GPGAPTS
CONNOR MCDAVID
533268100
LEON DRAISAITL
53304979
BRAD MARCHAND
52283967
MITCH MARNER
54204767
PATRICK KANE
+2
55155166
NATHAN MACKINNON
47204565
AUSTON MATTHEWS
50402565
SIDNEY CROSBY
55243862
MIKKO RANTANEN
49303161
JONATHAN HUBERDEAU
55204161
MARK STONE
53213960
ARTEMI PANARIN
42174158
MARK SCHEIFELE
53203858
ALEKSANDER BARKOV
49263157
SEBASTIAN AHO
55243357
JAKE GUENTZEL
56233457
ALEX DEBRINCAT
+2
51312354
NICKLAS BACKSTROM
54153853
MAX PACIORETTY
48242751
DAVID PERRON
53163551
  COMPLETE STATS
NHL STATS
YESTERDAY
MAY 9, 2021 G A PTS
JOHNNY GAUDREAU
1 2 3
MATTHEW TKACHUK
1 2 3
ALEX DEBRINCAT
2 - 2
MARK GIORDANO
1 1 2
BRANDON HAGEL
1 1 2
PATRICK KANE
- 2 2
MIKAEL BACKLUND
1 - 1
DILLON DUBE
1 - 1
MACKENZIE ENTWISTLE
1 - 1
DENIS GURIANOV
1 - 1
  COMPLETE RESULTS