There are only drills today, but Robby Fabbri looks fine at center and prospects Tage Thompson and Jake Walman look ready to build on solid showing at the prospect tourney.
He is an longshot, based on all the time missed due to his shoulder injury. The skill is there, but he faces a huge adjustment while trying to get up to NHL speed.
Like the Kings, the Blackhawks paid the price to high-level success. That team has cast off a LOT of talent while keeping the core of Toews, Kane, Keith, Seabrook and Crawford together. They will really miss Panarin this season -- he was magic across from Kane. Saad should click again with Toews and have a big year by finally seeing power play time, but that team lacks depth. Many kids will have to play.
Yeah, he talked to the media today. Nothing stunning to say. Happy to be playing center, comfortable with his new team.
Yeah, he went shoulder-first into the boards in the second practice. Stay tuned to STLToday for updates; I stepped away to do this chat.
Zach got off-balance and then hit awkwardly when Jaskin completed the check, nothing too vigorous.
I believe the rule will stay as is, but I do like the crackdown on coaching challenges of off-side calls. The NHL does NOT need a bunch of stoppages to take goals off the boards on hairline infractions. Fans don't pay to watch that. Those challenges should only be used in really obvious cases.
The transition started last season as the Blues tried to play faster and create more off the rush. Expect more of the same this season. Yeo is taking the changes Hitchcock made to start last season and tweaking them. This team may hit less, but it should be dogged on the puck with Sobotka playing a full season and Fabbri getting back in gear.
Not sure we'll see a 10-game internship for, say, Robert Thomas before he heads back to junior hockey. But I suspects Yeo will still be sorting players, particularly with Berglund subtracted from the lineup and other injuries possible. The top five or six forwards aren't much of a mystery, but the bottom six is very much in play.
The Blues will miss Ryan's ability to skate well and hit with leverage. He was a key piece of one of the NHL's top fourth lines. Can Yeo find another combination capable of matching that unit's impact? I doubt it. The fighting aspect of Reaves is nearly a non-factor in today's game.
He looked fine, skating well and smiling. Yes, he can score more this season by finding better forward combinations for him.
Easy. The NHL goes to 31 teams and the AHL stays at 30 teams. In the game of musical chairs, the Blues got left standing. The only true way to prevent something like this is to own your own affiliate, but that is generally a money-losing proposition.
They'll be advised to stay away from downtown for a few days. Since the camp is out at the Mills, that won't be a problem.
No idea on how the merchandising dollars are split up.
One day in we already have an injury, with Sanford going down. That is just one reminder of how things can change. There is limited competition overall. On defense, we saw Jake Walman play with Robert Bortuzzo. That could be the third pairing. Then again, the Dunn/Prosser duo couldn't be ignored. Seeing Barbashev play with Brodziak reminded us that Ivan could make the group as a fourth-line. Fabbri at center was fun to watch, especially with Thompson on the wing -- but Tage has a lot to prove before getting a shot at starting the season here. Seeing Stastny back with Tarasenko was interesting, as was Scheen in the middle with Schwartz and Steen playing on the wings. The preseason games will give us a better idea of how the coaches see players fitting together.
That IS an old arena. Calgary is amazing NHL down and Gary Bettman will do what he can to rally support for the Flames, but, yes, that team could be in some peril. Unless a team has a billionaire owner totally committed to a city -- or an iron-clad lease of the long haul in a new building -- it isn't a sure thing.
No, the Blues can move individual players around as management sees fit. And that will be a huge challenge for the front office this year as key prospects try to add those final layers of polish to their game. The Blues can't afford to have, say, Klim Kostin in a terrible situation.
Who says he will have no impact? I expect him to play somewhere in the Top 9 forwards and kill penalties. He could get some second PP duty, too, depending on the play of others. He will be a key counter-attacking component.