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FILE - In this Nov. 12, 2019, file photo, Pittsburgh Penguins' Nick Bjugstad (27) fights for control of the puck with New York Rangers' Brendan Smith (42) during the second period of an NHL hockey game in New York. Smith is one of a couple of throwback-style players bouncing back between forward and defense this NHL season. (AP Photo/Frank Franklin II, File)

Dual-role players? Defensemen as wingers show it can be done

Jan. 13, 2020 3:51 AM EST

Brendan Smith caught his breath for a few seconds on the bench before New York Rangers coach David Quinn called his name again. Smith had just skated a shift as a defenseman and was needed at forward, too. The natural defenseman hopped over the boards and got back on the ice at a different position. “The...