December 17, 2010

ST LOUIS, MO - DECEMBER 09: Cam Janssen  of the St. Louis Blues skates in warmups prior to the game against the Columbus Blue Jackets at the Scottrade Center on December 9, 2010 in St Louis, Missouri. The Blues defeated The Blue Jackets 4-1. (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)

Great win for the Blues last night – and more importantly, no more injuries to report.

  • In case you missed it, the Blues have confirmed that Erik Johnson is suffering from a slight knee sprain. Johnson, was in fact, on the ice this morning along with Alex Pietrangelo and Roman Polak.
  • Vladimir Tarasenko will join Team Russia at the World Juniors and Sebastian Wannstrom will join Team Sweden.
  • Adam Cracknell has been assigned to Peoria.
  • A great interview with Cam Janssen prior to the game against the Kings where he talks about playing for his hometown team, Keith Tkachuk’s retirement, the addition of Jaroslav Halak and much more.  The interview can be found at MayorsManor.Com
  • There’s also a neat wordpress site that features doodles from each Blues game – funny stuff – definitely worth checking out.  Go to 90-Pound Doodles

Perron out tonight

November 6, 2010

MONTREAL- JANUARY 20: David Perron #57 of the St. Louis Blues skates during the NHL game Montreal Canadiens on January 20, 2010 at the Bell Centre in Montreal, Quebec, Canada. The Blues defeated the Canadiens 4-3 in overtime. (Photo by Richard Wolowicz/Getty Images)

The Blues have confirmed that David Perron will not play in the game at Boston tonight. Perron is suffering from headaches stemming from the hit by Joe Thornton in the Sharks game on Thursday. This breaks a run of 167 consecutive games.

No word on whether Perron will be available for tomorrow’s game against the Rangers.

So, do certain media types and others still think Perron was “faking it”?

No word on the lineup yet – and it appears that Winchester is out too. Janssen is likely to take Winchester’s place and Nikita Nikitin will play his first game, taking Jackman’s place. It’s possible the Blues may well dress 7 d-men.

UPDATE: Blues have recalled Nick Drazenovic from Peoria. Whether this means that Perron will be out for more than one game is open to speculation.

News and updates

October 27, 2010

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According to the Blues Official Site, Roman Polak is to undergo surgery on a severed tendon in his right wrist and will be out indefinitely.

The Blues have, therefore, recalled defenseman Nathan Oystrick from Peoria. So far this season, Oystrick has played 10 games for the Rivermen, registering 3 goals and 4 assists.

The Blues have also activated Cam Janssen from IR.

Cam Janssen Update

October 10, 2010

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According to Jeremy Rutherford and Andy Strickland, Cam Janssen will miss two weeks with concussion and a sternum injury.

No word on who, if anyone, will be called up from Peoria.

EDIT: The Blues have recalled Ryan Reaves from Peoria

Flyers 1 – Blues 2 (OT)

October 10, 2010

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What a season opener! Not only was there a sellout crowd and the unveilling of the new Brett Hull statue outside Scottrade, but the Blues managed a very well deserved win.

The Blues came out hard and created chance after chance – only to be denied by the impressive Brian Boucher in the Flyers goal. There were 6 penalties in the first period with both teams getting 5 on 3 chances. The Blues took advantage and opened the scoring with 4 minutes left in the first period. An Erik Johnson laser of a shot was deflected by Boyes past Brian Boucher. Good to see Brad Boyes on the scoresheet so early in the season. The Flyers briefly came back at the end of the period but Halak stood strong and the Blues went in at intermission 1-0 up, having been outshot 9-6.

The second period saw the penalty count increase – 11 in all – but neither team could take advantage. Near the end of the period however, an almost game changing moment occured. Cam Janssen went for an innocent looking hit on Oskars Bartulis along the boards when he was absolutely levelled by teammate, Brad Winchester. Janssen was struck by Winchester’s elbow, forearm and stick, his head hitting the ice as he fell. Janssen was helped from the ice and didn’t return – mystifyingly being given a 2 minute charging penalty that was served by Matt D’Agostini. What was Winchester thinking, going for that hit? And why on earth can’t he hit opposition players like that?

It was a game changing moment – because when Janssen left the ice, the Blues lost a bit of momentum, they lost energy. The Blues were still playing well but suffered from a lack of confidence in front of goal – seemingly preferring to pass rather than shoot.

The third period saw the Blues outshot 14-6. They simply didn’t have the movement and creativity that they had in the first two periods. Jaroslav Halak made some excellent saves (but he really has to watch those rebounds) and the defence were throwing themselves in front of shots. Inevitably, something had to give and the Flyers tied the game through Daniel Briere who gave Halak no chance. It was Briere’s second goal in two games. The game went into overtime but not before David Perron almost sealed it for the Blues in the final few seconds – only being denied by another excellent save from Boucher.

For those of us used to the Blues attitude in overtime last season, this game was an eye opener. No longer were the Blues content to sit back and “play” for a shootout. They were aggressive, taking the game to the Flyers. Following Daniel Briere’s shot hitting the post, Barret Jackman sent the puck up the ice to Alex Steen, who had a couple of shots at Boucher before Carlo Colaiacovo smashed a rebound into the net. The Scottrade Center exploded with delight – and there’s a nice new touch with smoke coming out of the scoreboard when the Blues score.

A few points about the game:

  • Blues powerplay – too many tic-tac-toe passes and not enough shots. They went 1 for 10 which is simply not good enough.
  • The Blues penalty kill worked very well, blocking shots and not being drawn out of position.
  • Alex Pietrangelo – didn’t look out of place.  Some very nice touches – he deserves to be here.
  • Cam Janssen – was a ball of energy out on the ice, dispensing hits and even at one point found himself in front of net with the puck on his stick.  His shot was saved by Boucher.
  • Matt D’Agostini – played well on a really good and energetic fourth line.
  • The Blues defense deserve a pat on the back for their work and great shot blocking during the game.

A great start for the Blues – with Jaroslav Halak named player of the game.   Cam Janssen was kept in hospital overnight and I’ll update his condition as it develops.

Next up, Anaheim at 1pm St Louis time, 6pm UK time on Monday.  I’ll leave you with last night’s OT and Colaiacovo’s wonderful goal celebration:

Blues sign Colaiacovo, Janssen and Halak

July 6, 2010

[picapp align=”none” wrap=”false” link=”term=colaiacovo&iid=8268633″ src=”http://view4.picapp.com/pictures.photo/image/8268633/louis-blues-new-york/louis-blues-new-york.jpg?size=500&imageId=8268633″ width=”500″ height=”594″ /]

A busy day for the Blues today. They signed Carlo Colaiacovo to a two year, $4.25million contract and Cam Janssen to a one year, $600,000 contract.

The news that must be of a big relief to Blues fans however, is the announcement that Jaroslav Halak has signed a four year, $15million contract – a salary cap hit of $3.75million…which ironically is the same money that Chris Mason was holding out for.

Now, we can all celebrate with buying those Halak jerseys…or maybe watching this instead:

Blues 1 – Devils 0

March 21, 2010

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The Blues picked up two vital points with a hard fought win against the Devils. Alex Steen’s rocket of a goal with thirteen seconds remaining in period 1 proved to be the game winner with Ty Conklin picking up his fourth shutout of the season.

The first period was evenly paced – the Blues just outshooting the Devils by 8-7. No minor penalties were called in the first period but the game was livened up early on with a marathon fight between Cam Janssen and Pierre-Luc Letourneau-Lablond. The fight lasted 2 minutes, 40 seconds and Janssen waved the officials away numerous times. I’d mark the fight down as a draw but kudos to both players for an epic that had the New Jersey crowd on it’s feet in appreciation.

The Blues went into intermission 1-0 up thanks to an absolute laser from Alex Steen. Barret Jackman sent the puck up the left to Steen who carried it fast into the New Jersey zone and rifled a stunning shot past Martin Brodeur. It was a gem of a goal – worthy of a game winner and something Steen had been working on in practice.

The Devils wound up their game in the second – outshooting the Blues 13-6. Both teams each had a powerplay opportunity but the Blues PP in particular seems to be misfiring badly. In fact, they had zero shots on their first powerplay. The Devils could have tied the game early in the second when Ilya Kovalchuk picked up a rebound from Conklin and attempted a wraparound. Brad Boyes was alive to the danger however and stopped the puck with his stick and skates.

With the Blues up 1-0, a very crucial third period saw more powerplay opportunities including a 4 on 3 for the Devils when Eric Brewer and Jamie Langenbrunner were called for minors – and shortly afterwards, Roman Polak joined Eric Brewer in the penalty box. Good defensive play from the Blues and excellent goaltending from Ty Conklin and they killed off the 4 on 3 and 5 on 4.

There was a worrying moment for the Blues near the end of the game when Roman Polak was sent crashing into the boards following a hard shove and slash from Parise and Zajac. Amazingly – or not so amazingly if you follow the Blues regularly – the officials somehow managed to miss it entirely and there was no call on the play. Polak was helped off the ice but fears were allayed somewhat this morning when Jeremy Rutherford tweeted that “Roman Polak appears to be fine after nasty crash into boards.”

Great win for the Blues – and they’ve now swept the New York teams for the first time in their history in the same season. Follow that up with their Western Canada sweep from earlier in the season, the fact that the Blues penalty kill is ranked #1 on the road and that they have the most road wins in the NHL this season just highlights how bad they’ve been at home. Not to mention the weak powerplay. But – let’s keep the momentum going – the Blues face Nashville tonight (at home) in another vital matchup.

So, your game reports:

Kudos to Alex Steen – Blues need to re-sign this guy – and Ty Conklin with 29 saves.  Look for Chris Mason to get the start against Nashville.