Yes, when I spoke with Fabbri today, he mentioned that Schenn was in town recently. Some players get into town as early as August, but yes many trickle in in early September.
I have not glossed over this, repeatedly saying it is an issue. But let me say this: the Blues had plans in place that didn't pan out. So when Vegas came into the league and the AHL didn't expand, it put the Blues in a bad position. Sure in the big scheme of things, there should be some blame placed on the Blues for allowing this to happen. But it's not like they weren't working all along to prevent it - they were. A collection of variables occurred, though, and this is the situation. The good news is it will only be for a year, and I think there's a really good chance that what the Blues end up with will be better than their situation the past few years, so in the long run it will be worth the one-year setback.
A few have homes, but think most of them rent.
They were No. 10 in the league last year and I think they'll be better because of Fabbri returning and the Schenn-Lehtera trade, so I would place them in the top 10-15 for sure.
I could walk to the Dough Depot in my sleep and just reading your question I can taste the Pretzel bun. So I will answer your question based on the condition that I'm invited when you go. Deal?
OK, here's my thought ... I think Tarasenko see more time with Stastny. Yeo seemed to like the potential before Stastny got hurt, so I believe we'll get another look at that. I wouldn't disagree with anybody saying Tarasenko could play with Schenn, but with Schenn not even guaranteed to play center and the uncertainty of any chemistry he'll have with Tarasenko, I don't know how anyone could feel strongly that that will be the combo.
Doubtful. You have to have veterans and cheap veterans. Who knows if and when some of those young D prospects are going to be ready?
Army has been in the offices recently but I'm guessing he'll soon take some down time. He has said a few times recently that this is the team that the Blues will take into camp, so unless there is just an absolute surprise trade on his radar that somehow materializes I don't foresee any "missing piece" being added.
I don't think so. If they play well enough, sure. But I spoke to Army recently about sending prospects to parts unknown in the AHL and he said it will not have an effect on them. In fact, he believes that since players will be scattered playing with unfamiliar teammates, etc., that they're going to play even harder for ice time. He believes it will make the Blues' young prospects even more competitive. In other words, the Blues won't be keeping them on the NHL roster to avoid loaning them to other AHL clubs.
A couple of things here ... For those that lost track of Brouwer, he had 13 goals and 25 points in 74 games last year with Calgary. (I think he missed some time with a finger injury). He's a top-nine guy for Calgary, so I don't think they've got him on the fourth line. Anyway, did Army let him walk? The Blues were offering three years and Calgary offered four. Brouwer was also building a home in Calgary that might have been a factor in the decision. I didn't like the fact that the Blues let both Backes and Brouwer leave. I understood the Backes decision, but felt like keeping Brouwer would have been wise. I realize 13 goals isn't a lot, but he was on a new team and the Flames had an up-and-down year. I think he could score 20 and to have a guy on the right side with his experience, net-front presence and 20-goal potential would be just what the Blues need right now. I don't think his $4.5 million AAV is crazy enough that you say he's too expensive. I think I would have found a way to keep him, if he wanted to come back.
I don't want to say the door has closed because perhaps they do bring him back late in the offseason. I don't know. But this is the way of the NHL in the cap system: stars get paid, cheap prospects get opportunity and some veterans get squeezed out. Upshall no doubt can still play in the NHL and I'm sure he'll get a shot somewhere. But the Blues had a priority to re-sign Parayko and they wanted to have some cap under the cushion in case of injuries, and with several other options (Sobotka, Sanford, Barbashev, etc.), they are apparently moving away from Upshall.
Backes would have come back had the Blues offered the fifth year, regardless of Hitchcock. Keep in mind, even if Backes didn't like Hitchcock, Hitch wasn't going to be here for all of the five years anyway. In Brouwer's case, however, Hitch might have been factor. I don't think Brouwer absolutely couldn't play here anymore because of Hitch or anything like that, but if you have options and you're not tied to STL as much as Backes was, then it's easier to move on.
Thanks for the input. I'm having lunch with Turnbull next week and pick his brain. He was a big part of the roller-hockey scene in St. Louis.
I know this is an odd question to take in a Blues' chat and by no means am I trying to create a political debate here. The reason I accepted the question is because I was at a Cardinal game earlier this season and a friend was telling me that he thought there was a city where a company was parked outside the stadium and offering services to check firearms while fans were in the stadium. In other words, you pay someone to hold your gun outside and then get it back after the game. Has anyone heard of this?
That was the big question last year and I think we saw last year that it was an issue on many nights. I'm not talking about fighting, of course. I'm talking about going into the corners and going to the net, etc. I'm OK with the Blues having a smaller team and trying to build a lineup with speed, but you still have to be physical to win in this league. The Blues were not as tough as they needed to be and now they're without Reaves. I think his absence will have some effect, but without or without him, the guys up front and even on the blueline need to play a lot peskier.
Yeah, the teams aren't going to be get into that business.
It'll be in early September when the prospects gather in St. Louis before leaving for the NHL Prospect tournament in Traverse City.
Yes, he did get married recently and made it down the aisle without a limp and apparently without any equipment issues either, haha. I haven't spoken to him, but he said that his foot would be fully healed six weeks after the loss to Nashville.
The roster hasn't been released, but it should be sometime in August.