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01-26-2013, 10:05 AM
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Originally Posted by EastonBlues22 View Post
I don't think it's that clear cut.

One of the keys to beating our team last year was focusing an aggressive attack on Pietrangelo and Shattenkirk in an attempt to force their partners to carry the load in terms of transition play and puck management.

Sometimes those partners (Jackman, Colaiacovo, Huskins, etc.) were able to do a decent enough job for the Blues to win. Other times they couldn't. Either way, the Blues became a lot easier to play against because the transition attack was much less dynamic for most of the game, and the Blues didn't have the raw talent up front to consistently create scoring chances out of the relatively benign offensive situations they found themselves in all game at ES.

The Blues are going to play teams capable of consistently applying that sort of pressure to Pietrangelo in the playoffs this year, and they'll need more than a warm body minute-muncher next to Pietrangelo if they truly have hopes of winning it all.

Maybe Redden still has more in him than he's shown. It was, after all, his first NHL game in something like 2 years. I doubt he was in peak form, and I'm not looking to pass judgement on his limited play this year anymore than I'm looking to pass judgement on Cole's.

If he can created some dangerous offensive chances in transition (either by pushing the puck himself to get numbers, or by making passes that spring a dangerous counter), then he has a good shot at earning the job.

If he can't, and Cole (who is capable of both those things in transition) isn't able to earn the job either by ironing out the wrinkles in his own game, then the Blues are in trouble.
I want the Blues to do whatever is best for the team and gives them the best chance to win. That being said, I would like to see if Cole could develop that physical side that we have heard about with him. So far, I have not really seen it and the number of hits that he had last season does not look like a physical defenseman. Last season, we got steamrolled by the Kings in the playoffs because we could not handle their physicality. I do not think adding Redden to this bunch helps us deal with that at all. We need to see if Cole can add a physical compontent to our defense corp and if not, the Blues need to add a defender that can. The way that we look so far, shouldn't we be using these 48 games to prepare our team for a 7-game series vs. a team like the Kings?

As for Redden Thursday evening, I agree that he was unspectacular and steady. There were a couple of times that he had some minor missteps but all in all, not a bad first effort.

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