CBC grad last played with Blues in 2010-11.
Head coach Ken Hitchcock was already barking at players on the first day of training camp.
The 60-player roster has been split into two teams.
Training camp kicks off with many players back, but Hitchcock says 'full-on competition' is there.
Coach promises to place greater emphasis on checking.
It has been 10 games since Ken Hitchcock has taken over the St. Louis Blues’ on-ice product. He has gone an impressive 7-1-2 and is making Blues GM Doug Armstrong look like a genius for the change behind the bench.
But how much can 10 games really tell us? It is not even 1/8 of a full NHL season.
This is not the first time that a coaching change has happened mid-season. Far from it. So how have the last five coaches that took over mid-season faired the rest of the way?
Here are the last 5 changes that have occurred behind the bench in the middle of the season:
1. New York Rangers – John Tortorella replaced Tom Renney on February 23, 2009.
2. Philadelphia Flyers – Peter Laviolette replaced John Stevens on December 4, 2009.
3. St. Louis Blues – Davis Payne replaced Andy Murray on January 2, 2010.
4. New York Islanders – Jack Capuano replaced Scott Gordon on November 15, 2010.
5. New Jersey Devils – Jacques Lemaire replaced John MacLean on December 23, 2010.
Much to the dismay of Blues fans, Drew Doughty was not given a suspension for his illegal hit on Blues forward T.J. Oshie.
I am not implying anything by using the term “illegal.” While Doughty was not suspended for his actions, he did receive a small $2,500 fine from the NHL.
Don’t know about the hit or the punishment? Here is all that you need to know.
The Los Angeles Kings had a 3-2 lead on the St. Louis Blues late in the 3rd period of their game Tuesday, November 22 at Scottrade Center in St. Louis, Missouri. With just under two seconds remaining in the game, the Blues defense fired the puck toward a swarm of Blues forwards. T.J. Oshie received the puck and carried the puck into the zone. He skated along the boards and was watched closely by Kings defenseman Drew Doughty. The young King skated with Oshie along the boards until Oshie turned his back to Doughty and faced the boards, still skating with a head of steam. As Oshie turned his body, Doughty met him with a shove to the small of his back that sent Oshie into the boards head/shoulder first. Oshie was estimated to be about 2 ½ to 4 feet away from the boards at the time of the hit. Doughty was given a two-minute minor penalty for cross-checking on the play.
When asked about Oshie’s status after the game, Head Coach Ken Hitchcock said, “He’s good.”
Maybe I am a little late in seeing this week’s power rankings, but I feel it deserves a closer look from hockey fans in St. Louis.
Every week, The Hockey News compiles a list called The Hockey News Power Rankings, in which they rank all 30 NHL teams based mostly on their play from the week before, but also taking into consideration how they have looked as a whole throughout the season. This list is compiled every Monday.
So not including Tuesday’s win over Detroit and Thursday’s victory over Florida, the Blues had gone 2-0-1 in the previous week, allowing them to go 8-7-1 on the season. The wins came against the Chicago Blackhawks and Tampa Bay Lightning (both 3-0 victories mind you), and the overtime loss came at the hands of the Toronto Maple Leafs (a game in which the Blues were down 2-0 and rallied back to take the game to overtime).
So where did the Blues place in the power rankings?
That 23 means 23rdplace and the 25 means that the Blues were in 25th place the week prior.
NHL Senior Vice President of Player Safety and Hockey Operations Brendan Shanahan announced Wednesday afternoon that Blues forward Chris Stewart has been suspended three games for his hit on Niklas Kronwall of the Detroit Red Wings. The incident occurred at 11:14 of the first period of the Blues and Red Wings’ Tuesday night matchup.
Here is all that you need to know about the incident itself and the suspension that followed.
Niklas Kronwall had the puck in the Detroit zone and tried to pass the puck to teammate Brad Stuart along the blue line when Blues forward Patrik Berglund slightly tipped the puck to keep it in the Red Wings’ zone. Kronwall retrieved the puck and skated toward the right-wing boards. As he curled back, he was approached by Chris Stewart. The Blues forward came from behind Kronwall, leaning toward Kronwall’s right. Stewart gave Kronwall a shove at the numbers and Kronwall flew into the boards. Kronwall lay on the ice while both Red Wings and Blues players swarmed the area as a scrum ensued. Stewart was given a five-minute major and a game misconduct for checking from behind. Kronwall did return to the game, but not until late in the second period.
Niklas Kronwall on the hit:
"I think I got lucky there. I think it could have ended a lot worse."
Just days after the Blues relieved Head Coach Davis Payne of his coaching duties and replaced him with former Columbus Head Coach Ken Hitchcock, the team struck a deal late Thursday night that will send defenseman Nikita Nikitin to Columbus for defenseman Kris Russell.
The trade leaked just minutes after the Blues lost in a shootout to the Toronto Maple Leafs, 3-2.
Nikitin, 25, played in seven games this season for the Blues, registering 0 points and a minus-5 rating. Nikitin was selected in the fifth round, 136th overall, of the 2004 NHL Entry Draft by the Blues. He has one full season played in his NHL career, recording 1 goal, 8 assists and 9 points in 41 games played last season.
The native of Omsk, Russia has been a healthy scratch in eight of the last nine games.