Doan announced his retirement. He's moving on.
Reaves was a popular teammate. He didn't get to fight much, but his ability to hit with leverage was huge for the group. He could change the tempo of a game with one shift.
He moved up to team with Pietrangelo some even before Bouwmeester went down, so that was an indication of how far Edmundson has come. He is in the Top 4 now, even when JayBo returns.
Top young forward need to play. Fourth liners need to muck. If a good young forward is getting 8 or 9 minutes per game, that stunts development. Those guys need to be in the AHL pumping in goals, then coming up to fill scoring-line roles when somebody gets hurt. Now, if a young guy projects to top out as a bottom 6 guy, that is different.
That was the first game back. The players said it wasn't bad for a first game back. But while the renovations will improve a lot of things at Scottrade -- like the lighting, video board and premium seating -- I don't expect a magical upgrade on ice.
Ice is a problem at multi-purpose arenas across the league. Teams have put money into this and the league has made it a huge focal point . . . and yet the problem remains. It's not just a St. Louis thing.
They have tried a lot of things. The NHL has more success with outdoor ice in SoCal than it does with indoor ice in Rust Belt rinks.
Nah, we've other guys doing that during the week. This is pucks only. Ah, the memories of Rams chats! Took years off my life.
We're making Mr. Ortiz more Midwest by the day. As for Mizzou, maybe it was for the best that you couldn't read player numbers in the Purdue game. But back to hockey . . .
The NHL's big problem has been TV revenue. The Canadian package gave the league a bump, but obviously hockey rights fees pale in the U.S. compared to other sports. This explains why NBA contracts are insanely high compared to the NHL.
Given his years in the game, I was impressed with Thornburn's skating. He doesn't have Ryan Reaves wheels, but he can get there. With Sundqvist you notice he has a little size and he mucks it up. I haven't been dazzled by Bennett yet, but he will get a good look still due to the injuries.
It won't change his standing either way. The Blues like his long-term potential but he is not on a fast developmental track. He could survive a bad game and a great one wouldn't change much. Management already likes him more than the other young goaltenders.
Allen has to prove he is legit in goal. He has taken strides there. Otherwise the teams must develop the young forwards for more scoring depth -- preferably with a center coming out of that pile -- and the young puck-moving defensemen to fit into today's game. I believe they are on the right track. They added some intriguing skill despite poor draft position the last few years.
Even if Schmaltz hits big for them to balance their top 2 lines, their bottom six is suspect and their depth in goal and on defense is very suspect. They are a big injury away from big trouble IMO. A lot of things will need to hit for that team.
This will be an entertaining team that should make the playoffs and could take a run, depending on health. And there is a new video board!
Ah, the Circus. He surprised the Blackhawks in the playoffs. While he never reached his full offensive potential, he had a nice second life as a two-way veteran.
No. Any time you come back from knee surgery and then try to 110 percent for the first time in stop-and-start competition, the body is going to react. He's in tonight and there are five more games after this.
Ah, but teams rake in big coin during the playoffs. And without big TV dollars, they need that to make it.
OK., I have to run now and put a couple more stories in the system this afternoon. Thanks for all the questions and comments. See you next time.