Given the sadness of STL's sports community, the first NHL hat trick by the Blues' young winger couldn't have come at a better time.
Notebook • Team captain might have suffered head injury; Allen will start in goal tonight.
The Blues may be without captain David Backes, who was injured in Tuesday's 4-3 overtime win at Dallas.
Winger leads Blues in scoring and will stay on a line with Lehtera as they face Anaheim tonight.
Blues holding late practice session after win in Dallas on Tuesday night.
The Blues will be making a lot of business for U-Haul in the coming days.
Blues General Manager Doug Armstrong has been very busy the past 36 hours, sending Captain Eric Brewer, defenseman Erik Johnson and center Jay McClement packing. But the Blues get a pretty impressive return for all three players.
The Blues moved Brewer to Tampa Bay Friday afternoon, acquiring the rights to unsigned-prospect Brock Beukeboom and a third-round draft pick in the 2011 draft.
“I was quite honest with Eric, where we are in the standings. It's an uphill battle," Armstrong said to members of the media Friday. "It gives Eric a chance to go to a Stanley Cup-contending team that has a chance to play into June.
"It allows him to show his worth and it allows us to get some things for the future."
Brewer waived his no-trade clause to join the Lightning. He was happy to move on.
"I think in the end, you just want to make a good decision for everyone and put yourself in a really good spot to play hockey for a long time," Brewer said after hearing the trade went through. "Playing in Tampa will certainly change that this year."
After an atrocious start to the 2011 calendar year, the Blues still only find themselves seven points out of the eighth and final playoff spot. Just shows you what a strong start can do for your hockey club.
Rumors are aplenty currently for the Blues to get that magic back from the start of the season. We heard about the Alexei Kovalev rumors. We listened to the Johnson-for-Malkin rumors. And yes, we are interested in these rumors that Boston wants Captain Eric Brewer to fill out their big defense. But here is what I want to see; Mikhail Grabovski boarding a plane to St. Louis.
Hey, we can all dream, can’t we?
But here is the reality; the Toronto Maple Leafs are looking to shake up their roster. GM Brian Burke has already moved defenseman Francois Beauchemin and forward Kris Versteeg and has publicly stated that more moves are coming. Burke is also claiming that he is pushing his team to the playoffs, despite being eight points out of a playoff spot with just 25 games remaining.
When things are not going right for a hockey team, it’s easy to point fingers at the goaltender.
It is true in this case when it comes to puck control. Two games in a row, Blues goaltender Jaroslav Halak has misplayed the puck, almost directly resulting in two goals against. Friday, he was caught behind the net, resulting in an easy goal for the Wild. Saturday, he shot it out of play, resulting in a delay-of-game penalty. The very next play, Minnesota took control and scored a goal. Simple solution; Halak needs to stop playing the puck. Completely.
That is where the finger-pointing should stop. Taking puck-handling out of the equation, Halak is proving that he can be a number one goaltender. He just needs a better defense in front of him.
I’m as tired as you are of watching the Blues lose big games that they needed to win. Since the start of 2011, the Blues are a dreadful 4-9-4 and have shown a strong lack of drive. Blues writers and fans have been pointing a lot of fingers at Halak. He is the number one goalie who is supposed to pull the Blues out of their slump and raise them into the standings by shutting teams down.
182 goals, 360 assists, 542 points and a career +98. These are not exactly NHL-superstar numbers, but great can mean so many different things.
Craig Conroy, a St. Louis Blue from 1996-2001, held a press conference Friday announcing that he will retire from the game and accept a position in the Calgary Flames front office.
The news comes after Conroy was placed on waivers by the Flames a little over a week ago. He took some time after clearing to weigh his options and he ultimately decided that the next phase of his hockey career should begin immediately as a special assistant to Flames GM Jay Feaster.
"I think the emotions were the first few days," said Conroy. "I'll never say it wasn't disappointing, it was disappointing. ... I was fortunate that they gave me (time) because I'd probably be up here crying like a baby if it was that day or just after I cleared waivers.”
It’s time to put the excuses away for a few minutes. This team has to get better in the coming weeks and excuses are just slowing them down.
Injuries are devastating. If any two roster players go down with an injury, it will affect the team’s play. We all know this. We’ve all heard this from the Blues management, coaching staff, players, media, fans and custodial staff. I’m included somewhere in there.
It’s time to stop asking “Why is this happening?” and start asking “How can we fix it?”
After dropping their last game before the All-Star break to the Flames in an undesirable fashion (scoring on their own net has added a new element to the formula of losing), the Blues have gone winless in their last four games, and have won just twice since the start of the new year (2-9-2 record in January). This has caused the Blues to drop to 14th in the NHL standings, five points out of the 8th and final playoff spot. Something has to change.
Firing the head coach will put the team in the wrong direction. About 13 months ago, the Blues tried that. John Davidson let veteran coach Andy Murray go and brought in Davis Payne to lead this team to victory. It was working for awhile, but even that has gone sour. So blame Payne for that? No way. He is working with what he is given; it just so happens that what he is given is not producing.