Brett Howden
Photo by Kirk Irwin/Getty Images

New York Rangers head coach David Quinn has decided to make a change in line combinations by promoting Brett Howden to second-line center. 

New York Rangers head coach David Quinn has seen enough. Following a lackluster effort against Edmonton on Saturday, it was announced that Brett Howden will now center the second line Thursday night in New Jersey.

The Ryan Strome experiment at the center position on the second line is over for now. The line has only combined for one goal (Kaapo Kakko) and three assists for four points.

Quinn acknowledged that lines two through four needed to contribute more and has decided to change things up sooner rather than later.

Strome will be moved to center the third line and utility player Brendan Smith will move up to the third line.

Brendan Lemieux saw limited time at practice on Tuesday as he is still recovering from battling the flu bug.

The coaching staff has yet to determine or announce who will be the healthy scratch on Thursday between Micheal Haley and Greg McKegg. Both practiced with the fourth line on Tuesday.

As of Tuesday, this is how the lines were assembled at practice:

Panarin-Zibanejad-Buchnevich
Kreider-Howden-Kakko
Smith-Strome-Fast
Lemieux-Andersson-Haley/McKegg

The defense had no changes in personnel. It is expected that Quinn will keep the same pairings from Saturday’s game intact for the contest against the Devils at the Prudential Center on Thursday night.

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