Along your line of thought, even if the league allows expanded rosters after the trade deadline, the big question for me going forward is how will Hitchcock use his lineup when everyone is healthy? He's made comments that he feels the healthier and more skilled roster tends to play one way and a less skilled, but more gritty lineup plays another. The Allen decision clearly shows he will dress the lineup that he feels gives him the best chance to win, salary and age be damned. And now suddenly the Blues are starting to click and emulate last years team while playing perhaps their best period of the year last night. Or at least the period that most resembled the stifling, dominant style that made fans of other teams despise us.
Can a more talented roster embrace what makes the Blues so difficult to play against when they are firing on all cylinders? The thing about missing a few pieces up front is that it's enabled everyone on the roster to have more of defined role. We lose scoring depth and the 2nd unit PP suffers when those guys are out but we have more of a team identity at even strength. The Blues are workin right now and aside from Allen's play, that's where the 5 on 5 success is coming from.
Injuries usually have a way of making decisions for you for but it will be interesting to monitor. I think if anything Hitchcock is probably thinking that his comments earlier in the season have some merit with the way the current roster is playing.
The injuries do make player roles more defined, but I still think that players are a lot more "loose" with that than they were last season. You don't want to suffocate a player with their role, but while Pietrangelo's game has picked up you can still see he is trying to do too much (he's not the only one).
The fact the change towards last years style has started should continue when we get our guys back, but I think the bigger factor is that we've finally worked out how to use Redden effectively. That combined with Allen's play should have woken the players up.
Originally Posted by PerryTurnbullfan
I'm kind of hoping this may be an opportunity to unload D'Agostini even if it is for a puck bag or 5th to 7th round pick. Hate to see Cracknell or Porter go. Smart hockey players that skate their butts off.
I agree here. D'Agostini doesn't have a future with the team, we can't afford his salary going forward and we might as well trade him for whatever rather than risk losing someone who could be an asset next season.
Originally Posted by 2 Minute Minor
The only changes I think affect that kind of thing are:
Players don't have RE-ENTRY waivers. They still pass through waivers to get sent down. So Porter would be at risk on the way back down, as would Elliott. Its just when they're getting called up that they no longer are at risk.
Players coming over from European leagues don't have to pass through waivers. I think this rule is in response to the couple guys the Blues lost (unfairly, but by the rules at the time) Wellwood and I blank on the other one. This year they'd have been able to keep him. This was a good change.
Players coming from Europe are only waiver exempt if they are your RFA or on your reserve list. In the situation of Wellwood and Svatoš, players would still need to go through waivers. Also players under contract would still need to pass through waivers (unless waiver exempt).
The rule is there to basically stop teams "hiding" players in Europe to circumvent the cap. For example, if Datsyuk goes back to Russia from 2014/15, he couldn't keep coming back over when his KHL season ended and joining the Red Wings for the playoffs without passing through waivers.
That was one of the Blues' best games all year. They played a great team game, worked hard, played defense, made few mistakes and turnovers, and just completely outplayed Phoenix. Allen and Stewart are so awesome!!!
Also great to have Steen back...he's also producing at a point per game right now. Very impressive.
Russell has indeed improved.
Schwartz may not be showing up on the score sheet but man he's smart. He makes intelligent defensive plays every game.
I agree with the above posters and I've been saying it for a long time. D'Agostini needs to be dealt - he has no spot here. And Elliott just needs to be waived when McDonald and Tarasenko come back. Halak/Allen is our tandem. And I would really like to keep Porter and Cracknell. Their size and tenacity in the bottom 6 is much more valuable than D'Agostini...They work hard and really provide a nice boost to this team. I really like them a lot and they belong here, period.