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Game #10: St. Louis Blues vs. Detroit Redwings

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Old
02-07-2013, 11:23 PM
  #326
sbet1998
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Originally Posted by BlueBeard View Post
How long have Backes, Oshie, Berglund, Perron, Steen and McDonald been on the Blues now? The only two of those who don't have much playing time together is Berglund and Backes. The rest of them have played well together in multiple configurations for years now. If they cannot handle a shake-up in lines here and there we might as well trade every single one of them.
Check the record. What I witnessed was confusion in all zones.

It all started with the lines being changed. All those guys you mentioned have played together, but some of them dont work well together.

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02-07-2013, 11:26 PM
  #327
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I think they'll come out firing Saturday

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02-07-2013, 11:26 PM
  #328
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Alright, I have to rant. I know it's not the end of the world but people have to start taking a look at this team. Two pathetic efforts back-to-back where you just get blown out is not acceptable. The effort is poor and the quality is horrendous. 3 losses in a row where you get outscored 16-5. Awful. This team is pathetic to watch right now.

Obviously the whole team looks bad so I'm going to start singling out some players in particular. Not blaming the losses on any one person though.

Elliott is just an embarrassment. Maybe I did underrate Halak because Elliott can't carry this team. However, our goaltending duo still is not as good as people think it is. They benefited from the team defense last year to win the Jennings trophy. They weren't better than Luongo/Schneider, Thomas/Rask, etc. Goaltending isn't as strong as people think. It should get corrected but it's a weak link right now.

Where the hell is the energy? Right now the forwards are almost just as much of a weak link as the goaltending. Where is the forecheck? The thing that is the Blues' biggest strength when they are winning suddenly seems to have just disappeared. There's NO energy out there. Not even Reaves was hitting tonight. What the hell? All of our forwards pretty much just look flat. The Blues are playing soft and passive like they don't care. The only decent hit I even recall seeing tonight was early in the game from Polak. The Blues aren't playing a physical game at all. The style they are playing is just terrible.

Schwartz should be sent down in my opinion. I'm already looking forward to hearing about his great hockey sense again though. Don't give me that. He looks pretty bad right now. 1 point in 8 games and a -5. His defensive game is nothing special. He tries getting involved physical but he's still not strong enough. He's on the ice all the time. He doesn't have great speed. His shot looks to be nothing special. He's not doing much right now. Stop talking about his hockey sense because that's not getting him anywhere right now. He's playing well below expectations and I don't think he's ready yet. I know Hitchcock raves about him but then explain to me, when Hitch mixes the lines in the middle of the game, why does Schwartz always end up on the 4th with Nichol and Reaves? I guess because he deserves it. He's been our worst forward this year easily. I don't think it's a mistake that he sat out the last 2 games...I'm sure Hitch wanted to make him watch but that didn't seem to do any good. We're not getting much out of him right now. I've been critical of D'Agostini but right now you cannot convince me that Schwartz should be in the lineup over him. He's just not playing that well. Blast away because I know some people will disagree with this. I don't care, I've been saying this all along and I'll keep saying it until he proves me wrong which I highly doubt will happen anytime soon.

I would bring up Porter, who will not solve this team's problems, but he's a good energy player on the 4th-line. I personally think Porter-Sobotka-Reaves is the best 4th-line we could put together now. Nichol can win faceoffs but his intensity and edge he used to bring has not been there this season. He doesn't look the same out there, he's getting old. He's not a physical presence right now.

A center is a big need for this team. How I wish Steen could go back to LW where he looks much better...

Too many players are inconsistent. Stewart always will be, McDonald doesn't even look that great.

Kris Russell is not that good. I'd still love to hear an argument at how he is better than Ian Cole.

It's just a mess right now. Hopefully Hitchcock can fix this but honestly after these past 2 games how are we supposed to expect anything different on Saturday? And the Ducks are a good team.

If there's anything positive to come out of this, I think it's that hopefully these losses will give the Blues a reality check. I got tired of hearing people pick them for the Cup. We haven't proven anything and maybe the team got too high on themselves. They need to stay grounded and stick to their game plan that wins them games. Right now they aren't. This shows that the Blues do have some flaws that need to be fixed.

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02-07-2013, 11:27 PM
  #329
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Sorry, but I'm having trouble following the argument that a guy whose regular season record with the Blues was 49-17-11 prior to the last two debacles is suddenly a bad coach because he switched some lines around (as pretty much all coaches do all the time and even Hitch did many times throughout the 49-17-11 record).

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02-07-2013, 11:30 PM
  #330
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Hitchcock fuming. "Cheating the team and cheating the game."

Never seen him drum the podium before.


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02-07-2013, 11:32 PM
  #331
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Originally Posted by PocketNines View Post
Sorry, but I'm having trouble following the argument that a guy whose regular season record with the Blues was 49-17-11 prior to the last two debacles is suddenly a bad coach because he switched some lines around (as pretty much all coaches do all the time and even Hitch did many times throughout the 49-17-11 record).
He took over a team that had played together for quite a while and allowed them to play their game. He barely changed lines last year unless the Blues were being outplayed or behind on the scoreboard, which was rare.

I like Hitch, I think he is a good coach. I dont however, believe, that you need to mess with something that is working. It takes a while to get used to your linemates and figure out what the roles will be.

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02-07-2013, 11:36 PM
  #332
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Players are being selfish like Hitch said. Are we really arguing that NHL players can't move lines? What happens when there are injuries?

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02-07-2013, 11:38 PM
  #333
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I'm not calling anyone out in particular, but why does the fourth line matter so much to so many posters? They see their five minutes of ice, they don't score, and they aren't a significant liability regardless of Langs/Reaves/Porter/Sobs/Nichol/etc. Why does it matter who sees those five minutes so much? I'd much rather worry about who's on lines 1,2, and 3.

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02-07-2013, 11:38 PM
  #334
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Originally Posted by sbet1998 View Post
He took over a team that had played together for quite a while and allowed them to play their game. He barely changed lines last year unless the Blues were being outplayed or behind on the scoreboard, which was rare.

I like Hitch, I think he is a good coach. I dont however, believe, that you need to mess with something that is working. It takes a while to get used to your linemates and figure out what the roles will be.
We added Redden, Tarasenko, Schwartz what are we suppose to do not swap the lines?

Presently (not last year) the Blues are getting out played every night. Hence the shuffling. What do you propose a coach do when the line combinations aren't generating goals, quality pressure or scoring chance even?

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02-07-2013, 11:42 PM
  #335
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Not winning face offs is also killing us

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02-07-2013, 11:51 PM
  #336
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Originally Posted by ExJbeck View Post
We added Redden, Tarasenko, Schwartz what are we suppose to do not swap the lines?

Presently (not last year) the Blues are getting out played every night. Hence the shuffling. What do you propose a coach do when the line combinations aren't generating goals, quality pressure or scoring chance even?
Are you serious? The Blues had the best shot differential in the NHL and were scoring the 2nd best amount of goals in the league per game. Some breakdowns by the goaltending and a 6-2 record shouldnt mean total changes. I dont get the thinking. I like Hitch, too. I wont drink his kool-aid when he makes mistakes. Im a Blues fan, not a Hitchcock fan.

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02-07-2013, 11:53 PM
  #337
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Originally Posted by Big Al 2 View Post
Not winning face offs is also killing us
Face-offs are another aspect. They are brutal. They are not the reason for the losses recently, but they are contributing to them.

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02-07-2013, 11:55 PM
  #338
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I think this young team started reading the headlines raving about how good they are and they subconsciously forgot that they need to play with an edge and play hungry and play all-out to win. Then, bad things started to happen, which started a loss of confidence. In that situation, it's sometimes hard to find that edge again. They'd better find it quickly, as every game means something when you are plaqying mostly division rivals, plus a few conference rivals tossed in.

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02-07-2013, 11:56 PM
  #339
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Originally Posted by sbet1998 View Post
He took over a team that had played together for quite a while and allowed them to play their game. He barely changed lines last year unless the Blues were being outplayed or behind on the scoreboard, which was rare.

I like Hitch, I think he is a good coach. I dont however, believe, that you need to mess with something that is working. It takes a while to get used to your linemates and figure out what the roles will be.
It may take time to get used to finding your linemate creating some fancy scoring chances but that isn't Hitchcock's game plan and what this team is failing to execute on such a massive level over the past few games.

You and I could play on Berglund's wing. You chip the puck in and go to retrieve, Berglund supports you and if it is below the dot I stay high slot. If the puck works further towards the Blue line I drop lower in the zone. If the play is broken up at that point the high forward(you or Berglund) take the center lane, the other picks up the next forward and plays the area between that forward and D and I take the last forward/d passing lane. You, me, McDonald, or Tarasenko that's the role on the cycle. That is just one of the many very simple things that has zero to do with line chemistry and everything to do with execution of the X's and O's.

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02-08-2013, 12:00 AM
  #340
sbet1998
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Robb_K View Post
I think this young team started reading the headlines raving about how good they are and they subconsciously forgot that they need to play with an edge and play hungry and play all-out to win. Then, bad things started to happen, which started a loss of confidence. In that situation, it's sometimes hard to find that edge again. They'd better find it quickly, as every game means something when you are plaqying mostly division rivals, plus a few conference rivals tossed in.
Im with you. I may differ because I dont like the way Hitch has handled this situation, but it all comes back to them playing their game and not letting the other team do the same, especially at home.

Im hoping that because every team has a lull, that this is the Blues' lull.

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02-08-2013, 12:04 AM
  #341
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Steen backes oshie
perron bergie frank
amac sobotka stewart
porter nichol reaves

Cole pie
jax shatty
redden polak

Send schwartz down, sit russell, evaluate new performances. I'm not sure if it was going back to LW at the end or the collision with backes, but steen needs to be disrupting defenders with his forechecking. 2nd/3rd lines can be jumbled, but I wanna see something like this.

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02-08-2013, 12:09 AM
  #342
sbet1998
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Originally Posted by BlueBeard View Post
It may take time to get used to finding your linemate creating some fancy scoring chances but that isn't Hitchcock's game plan and what this team is failing to execute on such a massive level over the past few games.

You and I could play on Berglund's wing. You chip the puck in and go to retrieve, Berglund supports you and if it is below the dot I stay high slot. If the puck works further towards the Blue line I drop lower in the zone. If the play is broken up at that point the high forward(you or Berglund) take the center lane, the other picks up the next forward and plays the area between that forward and D and I take the last forward/d passing lane. You, me, McDonald, or Tarasenko that's the role on the cycle. That is just one of the many very simple things that has zero to do with line chemistry and everything to do with execution of the X's and O's.
Doesnt work like that. Its not that easy. Have you ever played hockey?

It takes time to develop roles and the understanding of where everyone will be at any given time in any given situation. When your coach is messing with that, it just makes it harder to learn on the fly. You learn most tendencies of your teammates when you practice and communicate and then in gameplay.

Unfortunately, their one week of practice and the season together was disrupted by major changes after 7 games. If you dont think that has an affect on their play you are kidding yourself.

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02-08-2013, 12:18 AM
  #343
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fred Murtz View Post
Hitchcock fuming. "Cheating the team and cheating the game."

Never seen him drum the podium before.

{Interview}
Is it just me or does it almost sound like he's calling out Perron?

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02-08-2013, 12:22 AM
  #344
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The Blues forwards just look like a complete mess. Does anyone else feel like we've been going offsides a lot lately? I mean, one of our forwards will just go full speed past the blueline without even realizing that the ******* puck carrier hasn't even crossed the blueline yet. Like use your damn heads and pay attention. I agree with Hitch that they are being selfish.

I'm ready to shake things up. Schwartz should be sent down and Russell needs to ****ing sit. They are awful to watch right now.

Hopefully Hitch stops being nice and only plays the players that actually deserve to play. Enough of this crap.

Man oh man this team. It's hard to find players who have actually played decent during this recent stretch. I do think though that Jackman-Shattenkirk have been our best defensive pair so far.

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02-08-2013, 12:26 AM
  #345
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fred Murtz View Post
Hitchcock fuming. "Cheating the team and cheating the game."

Never seen him drum the podium before.

"Personal agendas". That, to me, sounds like he's calling out Petro. It seems like Petro saw what got Karlsson the Norris last year was his offensive game, and he has decided that he must put up points, and he's forcing the play to do so. Maybe I'm just jumping to conclusions, but that's the first thing that came to mind when I heard that. Statistically, Petro has been one of our best offensive players. No doubt about that. But that's not really what we need from him. We have plenty of guys that can score goals. We need him to play solidly in the DZone, and get the puck to the forwards. Basically, play exactly like he did for the last 30 games of last season. The points are nice, but I'll take a positionally sound, 35 point Dman, over a 60 point Dman that chases the puck all over the ice and forgets his responsibility. It's really getting frustrating to watch this completely unneeded change in his game.

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02-08-2013, 12:31 AM
  #346
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Originally Posted by BlueDream View Post
The Blues forwards just look like a complete mess. Does anyone else feel like we've been going offsides a lot lately? I mean, one of our forwards will just go full speed past the blueline without even realizing that the ******* puck carrier hasn't even crossed the blueline yet. Like use your damn heads and pay attention. I agree with Hitch that they are being selfish.

I'm ready to shake things up. Schwartz should be sent down and Russell needs to ****ing sit. They are awful to watch right now.

Hopefully Hitch stops being nice and only plays the players that actually deserve to play. Enough of this crap.

Man oh man this team. It's hard to find players who have actually played decent during this recent stretch. I do think though that Jackman-Shattenkirk have been our best defensive pair so far.
I don't see how anyone can argue with that. They have both been solid all season. Jackman still has his "moments" where he doesn't seem to know what to do, but he really hasn't made too many "WTF" mistakes so far. Shatty has been even better than the last two spectacular seasons. It's really hard not to like his game, even in disgraceful team efforts like these last couple.

EDIT: I'm also starting to warm up to the idea of sending Schwartz down. I've been one of his biggest supporters, but it just seems like added experience will help him tremendously. He's still there if we have an injury, he will just get some more playing time and a bigger role in Peoria. If D'Ags is going to play, it should be in the Top 9. There's really no reason for either guy to be on the fourth. They are just warm bodies at that point.

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02-08-2013, 12:34 AM
  #347
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Is it just me or does it almost sound like he's calling out Perron?
doubt it. He actually played well tonight. He talked about players playing under the bar, Stewart, Schwartz, McDonald, and Backes all come to mind on offense. That's to say nothing of Russell or the other defensemen playing like hot garbage

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02-08-2013, 12:36 AM
  #348
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Originally Posted by ManyIdeas View Post
Steen backes oshie
perron bergie frank
amac sobotka stewart
porter nichol reaves

Cole pie
jax shatty
redden polak

Send schwartz down, sit russell, evaluate new performances. I'm not sure if it was going back to LW at the end or the collision with backes, but steen needs to be disrupting defenders with his forechecking. 2nd/3rd lines can be jumbled, but I wanna see something like this.



my thoughts exactly

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02-08-2013, 12:54 AM
  #349
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"Cheating the game." "Selfish hockey."

Who is Hitch calling out, and what specific instances in recent games would anyone offer to support his claim?

I can see Perron holding the puck too long in several cases...Stewart making some brain-dead plays with the puck and jumping offside far too often...Petro perhaps pushing the offense more than he should.

Other than that...what??? How do you diagnose the last seven periods of futility?

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02-08-2013, 12:58 AM
  #350
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This team has been coddled by the media and the fans and that includes myself. Time for them to realize they cant bring their B-game and win.

In their defense they haven given up some goals where the opposing team seems to have every rebound end up on their stick. Not including all the unfortunate deflections ending up in their net.
Yes. It boils down to raw effort....something this team had in spades on a consistent basis when they weren't able to just score a few late goals and climb back into games.

Quote:
Originally Posted by sbet1998 View Post
These two games have shown me that Hitch gets way too much credit around here and in general.

He's become an issue. In two home games Pietrangelo has scored the only two goals and they were flukey. Thats after he molested with the lines to a point that no one has any continuity. Schwartz-Tarasenko-Berglund???? WTF, and that's only one line. And he did this because of a tiny sample size. Its idiotic.

I think there is something to this, he cant keep acting like everyone on the Blues are interchangeable.
Line matching is a part of the game, just as line chemistry is. But let's be honest here, there is a putrid level of execution on fundamental hockey plays. That's not coaching....that's mental fatigue. All these cute little drop passes (in particular the horrid **** that Filpula turned into a shorty) and short chips are killing us. Last season we had virtually no one who could move across the opposition blueline with the puck....this season everybody feels like Pavel Datsyuk on zone entries but very few of these guys can gain the zone....nevermind making a play afterwards.

The thing that scares me is the early success. The amount of goals we scored and the fashion in which we scored them. Sure, we have some skill. But our possession game and puck MOVEMENT is what generates our chances. We've overcompensated and are now looking for the precise back door play and the tough pass through a crowded seam. It's now hit critical mass in terms of getting pucks on net. Just shoot for christ sake! Let a guy like Stewart bang in front. Create second and third chances...christ, we have 2 premier puck movers on the blueline who can get a low shot on net.

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