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Category: St-Louis-Blues

Rex Ryan With High Praise For The Blues

from Jeremy Rutherford of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch,

There was an unlikely visitor on the Blues’ bench at today’s morning skate. New York Jets coach Rex Ryan watched the team practice and spoke with Blues coach Ken Hitchcock.

“I said, ‘Man, you coach this team like a football team ... and that’s the truth,” Ryan said. “He spent a lot of time around football coaches as well. This is my first opportunity to be around a great hockey coach.

“Sport is sport, but you watch this (Blues) team and golly, this is what I want for our football team ... everybody buys in. They have one all-star and it’s the backup goalie, and here they are with the best record in hockey.”

continued

Filed in: NHL Teams, St. Louis Blues, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: new+york+jets, rex+ryan

Blues PK Key To Their Success

from Jeremy Rutherford of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch,

In the last stretch of Blues’ games, a few of the NHL’s top players have failed to muster a shot on goal. Chicago’s Marian Hossa, San Jose’s Joe Thornton and Vancouver’s Henrik Sedin came up empty, while twin brother Daniel Sedin of the Canucks directed one puck toward the net.

Blues coach Ken Hitchcock believes the reason is his team’s penalty-killing unit, which is guided by assistant coach Brad Shaw. The PK went into Thursday’s game against Anaheim with a streak of 32 straight kills over the past 11-plus games.

“The penalty killing has discouraged a lot of teams lately,” Hitchcock said. “I think it’s taken out the top players and discouraged them. When you kill penalties and you take out the top players, and they don’t get a bite on the game, they get discouraged and then I think the team loses energy.”

continued

Filed in: NHL Teams, St. Louis Blues, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Blues Continue To Cruise

from Jeff Gordon of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch,

Today the St. Louis Blues sit atop the Western Conference standings with 91 points.

They lead the Central Division by two points over the injury-depleted Detroit Red Wings. They have an eight-point edge on the No. 5 team on this side of the league, the Nashville Predators

They are tied with the New York Rangers for the most points overall in the National Hockey League.

“It’s hard not to look at the standings and see where we are,” forward Andy McDonald said. “It’s exciting. We realize there is a lot of hard work left. More importantly, we have to make sure we’re getting our game to a spot where we’re ready for the playoffs and improving, not kind of coasting into the playoffs. We want to be playing at the top of our game.”

Right now they are. Tuesday night’s 5-1 victory was most convincing. The Blues toyed with the visiting Chicago Blackhawks, a recent vintage Stanley Cup champion.

They beat them every way possible — even strength, power play, penalty kill — while starting fast and finishing faster. The Blues were quicker, more skilled and more physical.

continued

Filed in: NHL Teams, St. Louis Blues, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Hitchcock Discusses His Coaching Style

from Cam Cole of the Vancouver Sun,

It’s the ’99 Dallas Stars all over again, only they’ve moved to Missouri.

Hitch in St. Louis, Darryl Sutter in L.A., throw in Phoenix’s Dave Tippett for good measure ... they’re dragging hockey back to the dead-puck era. Suffocating defence, unadventurous offence, happy to win 1-0.

Only one problem, Hitchcock said Thursday. It’s just not true.

Not these Blues. Not on purpose.

“It’s really ill-informed,” said the affable elder statesman—how is that possible?—among National Hockey League coaches, who somehow got to be 60 years old while we weren’t looking.

“To me, when I hear that comment, that tells me people don’t watch the game. If people bitch about this, then they should bitch about the Olympic team because it’s the same terminology, the same philosophy, the same set of buzzwords.”

read on

Filed in: NHL Teams, St. Louis Blues, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: ken+hitchcock

Davidson Feels Good About The Blues

from Jeremy Rutherford of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch,

Blues President John Davidson calls the final two months of the NHL regular season, with postseason play a good possibility, a gratifying time for the organization.

The Blues, who beat Edmonton 5-2 Wednesday night, are tied with Detroit with the second-most points (87) in the league, and have matched last season’s point total with 18 games to play.

“In this business, every day is a day you grind it out,” Davidson said. “But when you have an hour in the hotel room at night and look at the standings, you feel good. And I feel good, not for me, but for the players, the coaches, and the people who have supported us all the way through.

“We’re not in yet, but there’s a good chance if we take care of business the last quarter of the season. I like where we are. I like the way we’re coached, I like the way we play and I like the growth of our players. They’re the key for our future and the future is sitting here right now.”

There was a high level of frustration within the fan base when the Blues were unable to make any moves by Monday’s trading deadline, mostly because of the team being for sale, but Davidson insists the ownership issues haven’t affected the club’s mindset.

continued

Filed in: NHL Teams, St. Louis Blues, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Do The Blues Need More Offensive Talent?

from Jeremy Rutherford of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch,

After parting with goaltender Ben Bishop on Sunday, the budget-conscious Blues aren’t expected to make any significant moves before today’s NHL trading deadline, but it remains possible that general manager Doug Armstrong could make dollar-for-dollar deals to bolster the injury-riddled roster.

“I have a clear understanding of what I want to accomplish and if we can do that, great, and if we can’t, we’ll just move forward with what we have,” Armstrong said Sunday. “I’ve tried to keep a realistic expectation that I think we have a good team right now and I’m quite comfortable that if this group of players are all together tomorrow at 1:01 Mountain time, we’ll be happy.”...

But the question today is whether the Blues, who are 15 points ahead of the ninth-place team in the West with 20 games remaining, have enough firepower to be contenders in the postseason. While continuing to lead the NHL in goals-against average (1.92), the club ranks 22nd in scoring (2.48 goals a game) and 27th on the power play (14.8 percent).

read on

Filed in: NHL Teams, St. Louis Blues, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Alex Steen Will Try Hyperbaric Therapy For Concussion Issues

from Jeremy Rutherford of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch,

A Winnipeg native and the son of a former Jets’ star, Blues forward Alex Steen had the game Saturday at MTS Center circled on his calendar. But still suffering from concussion symptoms, Steen watched his 26th consecutive game in a suit.

“It’s hard,” Steen said. “The whole process has been really, really hard on me, not being able to play. Tonight has been really emotional. This one hurts, not being able to play.”

Steen, who suffered the concussion against Dallas on Dec. 26, recently had been practicing with the Blues, but stopped last week. He acknowledged Saturday that skating has led to vision problems.

A variety of treatments hasn’t stopped Steen’s symptoms, so he’s planning to travel to California where he’ll spend at least two weeks receiving therapy in a hyperbaric chamber, similar to the treatment used by Blues forward Andy McDonald and former Blue Paul Kariya.

continued

Filed in: NHL Teams, St. Louis Blues, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: alex+steen

Blues Send Goalie Ben Bishop To Ottawa

via John Shannon tweet,

As per @SunGarrioch, the Blues have indeed traded Ben Bishop to Ottawa

note:  I would have pointed to Garrioch, but for some reason he has blocked me.

added 11:33am, via Elliotte Friedman tweet,

Bishop must play at least 30 minutes in 17 games, or he will be unrestricted. Even if he doesn’t re-sign, worthy move for Bryan Murray.

added 11:36am, via Jeremy Rutherford tweet,

The compensation for Bishop will be a draft pick, as high as a second-round pick.

added 11:40am, via Bob McKenzie tweet,

Before trading G Ben Bishop to OTT for a 2013 2nd rd pick, STL signed him to a one-year, one-way contract.

That means the 30 minutes in 17 games is tossed out the door.

added 12:02pm, via McKenzie tweet,

Correction: Bishop’s new one-year, one-way deal done with OTT, not St. Louis.


added 1:07pm
, Blues release on the trade can be read below…

Continue Reading »

Filed in: NHL Teams, Ottawa Senators, St. Louis Blues, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: ben+bishop

Warning: Tough Stretch Facing The Blues

from Bernie Miklasz of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch,

To quote Springsteen: we’re pulling out of here to win. And you have to hope that the Blues carry that mindset onto the road as they begin the most difficult stretch of the 2011-2012 schedule. The Blues will play 13 of the next 16 games away from the comfy confines of Scottrade Center, and a lot of folks in St. Louis and around the NHL are wondering if the boys have what it takes to become a sturdy, reasonably successful road team.

First up, a six-game road trip that begins Thursday night in Nashville and continues through Winnipeg, Calgary, Edmonton, Vancouver and San Jose. After that, the Blues will settle at home for three games, then head out on another seven-game road journey to take them to Columbus, Chicago, Carolina, Tampa Bay, Anaheim, Los Angeles and Phoenix.

This patch of road games will largely define the Blues for 2011-2012, at least until they have a chance to redefine themselves (for better or for worse) in the Stanley Cup playoffs.

continued

Filed in: NHL Teams, St. Louis Blues, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Langenbrunner Placed On IR

ST. LOUIS – St. Louis Blues Executive Vice President and General Manager Doug Armstrong announced today the club has placed forward Jamie Langenbrunner on injured reserve.  Langenbrunner suffered a broken bone in his left foot Sunday in Chicago and will be re-evaluated in four weeks.

Langenbrunner, 36, has posted 21 points including four goals and 17 assists in 57 games with the Blues this season.  The 6’1, 202-pound forward is just eight games shy of becoming the 21st American-born player in NHL history to reach 1,100 games played.

Filed in: NHL Teams, St. Louis Blues, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: jamie+langenbrunner

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About Kukla's Korner Hockey

Paul Kukla founded Kukla’s Korner in 2005 and the site has since become the must-read site on the ‘net for all the latest happenings around the NHL.

From breaking news to in-depth stories around the league, KK Hockey is updated with fresh stories all day long and will bring you the latest news as quickly as possible.

Email Paul anytime at pk@kuklaskorner.com

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