Players like two things: to play and to win. So Sanford will likely enjoy the playing time and opportunities he will get in Ottawa, but will likely miss very much going from a team that had some semblance of Stanley Cup hopes to a team that barely has playoff hopes. Sanford is also on a one-year contract and will be an unrestricted free agent, so if all goes well this season, he'll have a say in where he plays next. He'll miss St. Louis, a lot, especially if the losses pile up in Ottawa, but he'll enjoy the opportunity he's getting with the Senators. And if he wasn't a UFA, he'd rationalize it by saying he had a chance to be part of a big turnaround up there.
The Blues have drafted pretty well in my opinion, considering that they seldom pick prior to the middle of the first round. Bolduc, this year's pick, was 17th overall, and that was the highest the Blues had picked in a decade. At that point, there are very few absolute lock NHL players. Armstrong has turned around and traded many of these players for other, more experienced players. I don't know that you can say Bokk didn't pan out; he was traded to Carolina for Faulk and has played one season in North America. To be successful, NHL teams need high-end talent and a roster filled out with competent youngsters making the league minimum. You get those players through the draft.
I was going to say that there would be many posters in this very chat who would disagree with that assessment of Mikkola. From what I can tell, Mikkola is one of the most popular players among the fan base.
And in the non-game practice, we saw the lines of Saad-O'Reilly-Perron and Buchnevich-Schenn-Tarasenko.
OK, back to the questions
I don't see that trade happening. At this point, the Blues are going to ride out the Tarasenko storm, and they're going to give Perunovich a chance at some point.
Jim and I will be at each road game. The P-D is committed to that. (Jim should be arriving in Columbus for tonight's game almost any time now.) We've only got the travel schedule figured out through the end of November, so that one will be coming soon.
Laine and John Tortorella may not have been the best possible pairing. That was a cataclysmically bad season for Laine last year, on both sides of the puck. He's got a tremendous shot, one of the best in the league, but when you look at some other numbers under the hood, he doesn't provide a whole lot, and that goes back to his time at Winnipeg. Having been there for that five goal game against the Blues, I would say he looked out of this world that night, though with the amount of space the Blues defense gave him, I might have been able to score one.
That's a tough question. Normally, I would say a guy being sent down by Ottawa wouldn't attract much attention. I mean if you can't make Ottawa where are you going to make it? But when that guy was a first-round pick not too long ago who is 6-6, that might be appealing for some team to take a chance on, especially when that guy makes practically the league minimum. It's a no-risk move to put in a claim. History says that in the last days of camp, when teams are putting eight to 10 players on waivers every day, you can slip a guy through. I would be a lot more confident slipping a lot of other guys through waivers than Brown. I'd think it's a 75-80 percent chance he goes through
The return on Scandella would be better than the return on Bortuzzo, a career seventh defenseman. If they wanted to make room for Perunovich and needed to open a spot, that would be one way to do it and those two are the most trade-able on the team. Right now, they're probably thinking that Perunovich will get some chances in the normal ebb and flow of the season. Someone is going to block a shot or get hit into the boards, go on IR and they can give Perunovich a look. Right now, I think he's going to start the season in the AHL.
If he makes the team, that's a reasonable expectation, that he'll get power play and third line time, but his shot is nowhere near as good as Hoffman's, which is one of the best in the league.
If he was claimed by another team, that would mean he didn't get in 30 games with the Blues, so the Blues would get the pick. I'm sure the Blues were also thinking one step ahead and wouldn't have made the trade if they were pretty sure Brown would be taken on waivers. As I've said on other answers, I think there are some things that would make him appealing to teams. Let's see how he does in a few games, starting tonight. The fourth line is very much in flux for this team.
Maybe in a year or two when it's clearer what Perunovich can do, maybe the Krug signing wasn't needed, but right now, Perunovich has played two preseason games against marginal talent, so right now, he's not making Krug redundant just yet. It's way too soon to say.
The two lines Berube used in practice today, Saad-O'Reilly-Perron and Buchnevich-Schenn-Tarasenko, look like lines that could start the season. That puts Thomas and Kyrou on the third line, with no obvious options for the left wing there. Neal could be a fit, if he shows he's worth signing. (Which I remain unsold on.)
Gotta confess, I don't remember the specifics, but it seemed to be over pretty quick.
That's what the preseason is for. Fans may not be excited to Scandella over Perunovich, but right now Berube probably has a preference for Scandella. Perunovich is not Cale Makar.
Some questions are hard to answer
He may meet those requirements physically, but now he has to meet them mentally and do what Berube wants him to do and execute on the ice. That will be the big test for Kostin, putting that body to work
I'd ask this Gordo in his Friday chat. He'll have a better feel for that.
Neal's past few seasons have not been as good. He's been below the league average in expected goals the past three seasons. He's 34. He's fighting time, which is undefeated. He's got to show those past few seasons have been overcome.
Well, they've clinched a playoff spot and can't improve their position any, so this is as good a time as any
They know what they want their identity to be. They just have to do that.
I think he'll start in the AHL barring an injury that opens a spot. He can use some games and getting them in Springfield will be good for him. But we'll see him this season and when he gets a chance, who knows what might happen.
I think next Wednesday will also be the Cardinals first (and maybe only) playoff game. So look for Jim reporting from Columbus tonight as the season starts to pick up speed. We're about 2 1/2 weeks away from opening day.