Skill is certainly not the issue. Berglund's return bolsters both units. I like the fact the Blues now have two PP units instead of one, although it remains to be seen if Jaskin is more than a placeholder.
With no cap spice and most playoff-bound teams looking for scoring help, I'm not optimistic about an upgrade and I am very optimistic about what is coming next year and beyond. So I wait until closer to the deadline when more rental options could emerge. Berglund has made a mark, especially on the PP, and I'd want to see Blais to get more looks -- especially with so many home games in the near term. Yeo can shelter him with the last change.
And good for those folks. Never should have lost hockey. That place rocks. Love St. Paul, too. Twin Cities also appreciates getting the sport back. Never should have left.
I have nothing on that front. Check in with Derrick Goold's Twitter feed.
For this team? None. All the NHL chatter surrounds teams bleeding from every orifice, like Ottawa and Edmonton.
Sure, at some point he could be on the list of guys the Blues would consider as a rental. He could be a nice third-liner here. But team fit will mean more than hometown ties.
Little by little, he has become more assertive. I believe this PP shift is designed, in part, to get him to that next offensive level. If he plays with 91 with the man advantage, he is going to get some room to shoot.
The Blues have won back-to-back games and they deserved two points in the game prior to that . . . not much of a struggle. They have gained significant help from Berglund and Bouwmeester. Let's see if Blais gets over the hump. The Blues figure to add a piece at some point, but this team is not broken.
Pretty cool, right? Kid got to go through pregame preparations with the Blues, then go out and say hello to fellow St. Louisian Mike McKenna during warm-ups. Imagine if he got to make a save or two. That would have been amazing.
Dunn shoots left and handedness matters more and more on defense, given the high-pressure forechecking in vogue these days. Teams crave right shooters because they are scarce. When a D-man plays a lot of minutes on his off side, that is a lot of tough first passes off the backhand under duress. Long story short, he is better on the left side.
JVR is a first- or second-line shooter. Mike Babcock can play him on the so-called third line because he has Matthews, Kadri and Bozak down the middle. Could Toronto trade him at some point? Sure, since Toronto can't keep everybody. The Leafs would want a big package for JVR and, again, not sure this team will pay huge for rentals because having a bunch of top prospects on entry-level deals could be salary cap gold during the next few years.
Let's not forget that Upshall was a sixth overall pick once upon a time. He has multiple double-digit goal-scoring seasons. He can still skate and he has a decent shot off the rush.
Just don't call him "Tank." Made that clear from Day 1 that the Russian nickname didn't come with him to North America.
Can't rush to that judgment. I had Jaskin on the "doomed" list a few weeks ago and, for now, he has prominent role. Let's see if he keeps it up. I could see Sundqvist sliding into Brodziak's role next year and doing some PK work. As for Magnus, he has lots to prove. There are a half-dozen guys in the organization ready to come for his spot next year.
That will make it easier to keep the band together. Edmundson, in particularly, is going to get paid. He could eat up that increase all by himself.
I know Chris had serious lingering issues. I don't know exactly where he is at now, but he does seem in good spirits. Andy I'm not sure about. But the stuff Paul Kariya went through -- and Jeff Brown -- remind us that the NHL didn't handle its concussion crisis well. Let's hope the next generation of hockey players will be better protected, starting at the youth level.
Seattle is coming to the NHL, it seems, and that likely would bump Arizona into the Central. Especially if Arizona moves to Houston. But relative strength/weakness won't influence realignment because that changes year to year.
More tempered now. He got his ovation. He's the enemy now. But it's not the focus ever shifts to the head during the normal course of a game. It's not like a player getting booed when he takes the ice for his first shift.
They are all good prospects. Will they all make it? Probably not. Schmaltz, in particular, is a fringe guy. But independent analysts love Thomas for his all-around game and Kyrou for his speed and offense. On a lesser team, both could be in the NHL right now. If several of these guys contribute (as Dunn has this year) on entry-level deals at once, that will allow the Blues to put a LOT of talent under the salary cap. It's not use their talent level, it's their talent/cost ratio. Four of them cost the same as, say, one supporting cast veteran like Patrik Berglund.
You know, I never checked on that. Not sure if we have "write right, shoot left" guys.
The whole right-handed shot thing at forward could be a tiebreaker, at some point, if the Blues look to add somebody. It helped Beau Bennett get a contract here, but, sadly, being right-handed wasn't enough to make him effective at this level.