We think things are working now, and if you can see this, they are. Sorry for the delay. It did allow me a chance to finish my lunch.
Room, yes, but I don't know if he fits in the team's plans. The Blues have younger forwards they want to get playing time, and if they re-sign Maroon, in addition to whatever he makes, he gets in the way of other's chances to play. They've got to open some room for players like Kyrou.
Philip Pritchard with the Hockey Hall of Fame knows, and the Blues know, but there has not been a schedule released that I've seen. It's going to be in Ontario for the rest of the week, and from there I presume it moves on to Quebec and then I think it goes overseas. Other than a few people who have put out advanced word of having the Cup, I find out where it is on a day to day basis.
Those seem pretty close to what I would think. Edmundson could go a little higher, but not much. He'll be an interesting negotiation; he's show how good he can be, but by his own admission, he didn't have a great year. Seems like the Blues are unlikely to invest in a really long-term deal for him, but he can be an integral part of their unit going forward, especially with players like Gunnarsson and Bouwmeester aging out. I think you're better off investing in him right now than betting on Mikkola.
I was listening to NHL radio on Sirius one day during the playoffs, and they were talking about the players on the Blues' first power-play unit and couldn't understand why some of the team's best players weren't on it. The answer, for those of us who watched the team all season long, was they had those guys on it and it didn't work, so Berube was trying anyone he could. It's clearly not a personnel issue, because they've got guys who do great five-on-five and then do nothing at five-on-four. It needs to be a mental adjustment. Move the puck more quickly. Take shots more quickly. Try a one-timer for a change. The Blues love to work the puck around the perimeter waiting for, uh, someone to trip? Two players to bump into each other? I would love to see how the Blues' number of one-timers compares to the rest of the league. Maybe it just seems low to us since we see it and don't see every other team's power play all the time. Win the faceoff, get set up, and then shoot!
I don't want to explore the more perverse things that have gone on, but yeah, having your dog eat from it has got to be not at the bottom of things that have gone on with the Cup. I would let my dog eat out of it. I would also put my baby -- if I had one -- in it.
Parayko seemed to get better at it as the postseason went on, and you can't take a one-timer every time (unless you're getting really good passes), but the Blues seemed to have every one getting the puck on the wrong side. And, as Gunnarsson showed, a one-timer doesn't have to be 90 mph. If you're getting the shot off quickly, a slower speed can work just as well if the goalie isn't in position yet.
Training camp should open around Sept. 13, so you're talking seven or eight weeks. (The Blues first preseason game is Sept. 16, and camp usually starts three days or so before the first game.) Sober yes, but common sense says it's tough to come back after that long a season and that many games. Other teams have had two months more to get rested and, in the case of players who had offseason surgery, that surgery didn't happen until mid-June rather than early April, so you may not be fully recovered by then. I talked to Ryan O'Reilly a couple weeks after the season ended and he said he was still getting up in the morning thinking, what do I have to do? Where do I have to be? When's the next game? So unwinding from that season will take some time too. Add to that the inevitable distractions that will be in camp and a slow start seems reasonable. Just don't expect the Blues to fire the coach this time.
The teams that took steps up also took risks, betting that what they got would be better than what they gave up. Colorado moved in that direction, as did Dallas, which went all in on winning now. Chicago's goalie upgrade could make a big difference (especially if you consider a healthy Crawford an addition), though it could be the area in front of the goalie that needed even more help.
I don't know that Maroon is the difference between winning the Cup and not winning the Cup. And it's apparently not as though other teams are breaking the bank to sign Maroon as the answer to what they're lacking. It's Maroon's bad luck that he's at an age where NHL teams routinely look to save money by using their young guys. The Blues' window is more than just next season, and I think for the remaining seasons of that window, they're better off with Edmundson. (Not that Edmundson/Maroon is the binary exchange.) And as for young guys like Kyrou, they still need to prove themselves and while I generally side with experience over potential, you're talking about multiple candidates the Blues have to fill that hole.
What? No animal has ever touched the Stanley Cup before? Robby Fabbri is the ground breaker? Also, Larry Robinson is amazingly laid back. I think he's tolerant of a lot of things, with the possible exception of the city of Boston.
By the way, since we got off to a late start and it's a late arriving crowd, if you've got questions, now is a good time to ask.
Armstrong said there could be one, and heaven knows they need someone to help the power play.
Excellent chance Fabbri's dog has better hygiene that some NHL players.
I think it's better than a coin flip on both. They're two key elements of the team and the Blues have a strong incentive to keep them around. The challenge will be if other teams make them bigger offers, which could happen with Schenn, because he's a couple years younger. Which would be an incentive for Armstrong to try to wrap them up before they go on the market. And Pietrangelo isn't easily replaced, which will make the Blues want to keep him even more. Neither are at a point in their career like Backes was.
I haven't heard anything on that front, or whether they'll have one person doing it all the time. They've had auditions the past two years, so I would think they have some idea on the candidates out there.