Congratulations! You, fair member of society, have found your way to rooting for the St. Louis Blues just in time for a run at the Stanley Cup as the regular season draws to a close. As you haven't been a fan for very long, you might be a little confused as to who's who on this Blues team. Lucky for you, St. Louis Game Time not only caters to the absolute crazy obsessed fan of the Blues, we also cater to the newer type of bandwagon fan. For the new folks, we have a handy guide comparing Blues players to various celebrities, real and fictional, to give you a better idea of just who you're throwing your support behind.
Captain David Backes will make you think of Die Hard hero John McClane
David Backes, when he started out with the Blues, seemed to be arriving at exactly the wrong time. He came into a team that was only one season removed from drafting first overall. He had played a tough game at Minnesota State-Mankato and in Peoria, much the same as John McClane had been a tough NYPD officer. When he finally did get the call up for the Blues, he had to play his first game in bare feet as he didn't have any skates. That last sentence might be untrue. David Backes does the tough shit, doesn't let the bad guys get the better of him, and always looks cool while doing it. A leader by example if there ever was one. I can only hope that David Backes also knows what a TV dinner feels like.
New guy Jaden Schwartz evokes Luke Skywalker during The Empire Strikes Back
At a billed height of 5'9", Jaden Schwartz is a little short for a stormtrooper. Much like his Star Wars counterpart, Jaden Schwartz has sky-high potential after leaving Tatooine or Colorado College and taking his first step into a much larger world. He's already started to realize his potential. Hell, he buried the proton torpedo in the back of the thermal exhaust port (That's what she said) on his first shot on goal in the big league. Although he has a long way to go to get as good as he could be and may end up losing an arm in the process, Jaden Schwartz is well on his way to bringing balance and order back to the Blues. And why Luke during Episode V? He's past taking his first step into that much larger world. Right now, he's looking at his first major setback, in the form of a healthy line-up, rather than his old man going all HAM on his right arm. I'm excited to see him the next time he's out there.
You'll swear Carlo Colaiacovo is the next coming of Super Dave Osborne
Unlike another oft-injured character, Wile E. Coyote, both Carlo Colaiacovo and Super Dave have the best intentions to providing quality entertainment for teammates and fans. Much like Super Dave, Carlo Colaicovo and his Saskatchewarn Sealksin pads have ended up on IR on more than a few occasions. Since coming over from the Maple Leafs in a trade that was once thought to be not horribly lopsided, Carlo has managed to stay in the lineup more often than not while contributing on the back end of the ice. Unfortunately, the fanbase still holds its collective breath every time Carlo goes for a check, gets checked, or otherwise engages in physical contact as it could very well be the next spectacular stunt gone wrong. *Thumbs up
More after the jump.
As he endeavors to be a star and regular scorer, Chris Stewart will bring comparisons to Rod Tidwell
Although the wide receiver in Jerry Maguire was on the other end of his career as opposed to Stewart being only 24, both are looking to prove that they belong in the upper tier of their respective leagues. Both are in contract years and looking to secure another chunk of change to make them feel more secure in their current surroundings. It's pure speculation to say whether or not that's what is holding Stewart from getting into that "elite" level he covets, but I hope Stewart's agent took the fish on his way out. If for whatever reason, Stewart ever saves the collective ass of the Blues, this piece will be edited to compare him to Captain Steven Hiller from Independence Day. Welcome to Earf.
Veteran Barrett Jackman will remind you of Maximus Decimus Meridius
The comparison doesn't lie in the fact that you wouldn't want to be on the opposite end in a fight with either of these guys. Rather, both were around when things were better. A lot better, in fact. Jackman came in on the tail end of the perennial playoff teams that featured the likes of Pronger and MacInnis. Maximus used to be a damn successful war general before Bill Laurie used his powers as emperor to gut the empire to make it easier to sell. As both had to be part of a rebuild from the bottom, Maximus Jackman has plenty of experience and inspiration to get back to the top. Even with the rest of the roster as improved as it is, I could still see Jackman single handedly slaying the rest of the league with the facewash, the "You're an idiot" look, and sound defensive play.
St. Louis always a special place for players that epitomize the word "scrappy." Although the Blues have other vertically challenged players, the likes of Andy McDonald and Jaden Schwartz have the top end skill component that take them out of contention for the coveted title of "Scrappiest Blue." Like Eckstein, both Nichol and Sobotka have to rely on pure hustle and never leaving any effort behind to help their team.
Ryan Reaves will lay his vengeance upon you, just like Jules Winnfield
While the Grim Reaver's job is not JUST about putting a hurt on the other guy, it's a pretty damn big component of it. It's impossible to know if Jules had soft hands around the net like you'll occasionally see Reaves use, but I'd like to think that Ryan Reaves could quote Ezekiel before laying down a beating in his next fight.
Head Coach Ken Hitchcock came in midseason and got results, just like Camp Counselor Pat Finley did in Heavyweights.
The guys running the show before these two arrived, Davis Payne and Tony Perkis, respectively, just didn't know how to achieve success like these guys did. Both had been around the game a long, long time, with Hitch having 14 seasons of experience behind the bench and Pat Finley going to Camp Hope every summer since he was 10. Eventually, both rose to take over their camps and reach new heights with them. It'll be hard to beat a victory in the Apache Relay, but a run at the Stanley Cup would be nice.
TJ Oshie has changed over the years, just like Justin Timberlake
They both make plenty of the female population swoon. They both did things a few years back that pissed a few of us off. Some of us have bleeding ears from the sounds of boy bands such as N'Sync. Others can't stand the concept of sleeping through practice or having a questionable work ethic. In the cases of both, a certain degree of maturing has happened. TJ Oshie started playing a more consistent defensive game, showing up on time, and occasionally remaining upright for an entire shift while Justin Timberlake left shitty pop music behind, started doing funny shit like "Dick in a Box", and began hosting SNL. Both grew up and both are better for it.
Aging veteran Jason Arnott might as well be Mystery, Alaska's John Biebe
John Biebe was, at one point, abandoned by the committee that put together Mystery's Saturday game in favor of a younger and faster Stevie Weeks. Jason Arnott, who was let go by the Washington Capitals, may have had more people clamoring for his services than the Russell Crowe character. However, when everyone thought Arnott had nothing better to offer than veteran insight, locker room stories, and other things that don't translate to the ice, he uses his slapshot to put away a few power play goals and add to the offense. I can only hope Arnott's as useful as John Biebe if the New York Rangers come to town.
Jamie Langenbrunner has been around the league for a while, much like Jason Arnott. Unlike Jason Arnott, it was very clear that Langenbrunner's main appeal was his leadership skills, rather than any contribution of size or skill. Jake Taylor helped straighten out Ricky Vaughn and even psyche a few players with tales of cheating wives and a "called shot" that turned out to be a bunt. Jamie Langenbrunner has been cited as a great leader by several Blues skaters, including the authority on every subject ever, David Backes. Langs's post-whistle shenanigans have even drawn a few penalties. Hey, contribute however you can, right?
Kevin Shattenkirk brings the laughs off the ice but handles his business on the ice well. He makes me think of Dr. Peter Venkman.
It's not just the hairline, although the hair is a big part of it. Both have Ph.Ds, with Venkman's being in parapsychology and Shattenkirk's being in sick, sweet passes. Both are so good at their professions that they seem to be able to approach it in a nonchalant manner and still succeed. Both are funny. If you don't follow @Shattdeuces, you should. If you haven't seen Ghostbusters, then you get a D- at life. I don't know if Shatty has a girl like Dana Barrett, but he deserves somebody that loves him and his sick ass hands.
Brian Elliott has had a "coming of age" season. Yep, he draws the comparison to Baby from Dirty Dancing. Frances Houseman if you want to get all technical and shit.
Before Brian Elliott came to St. Louis to spend the summer with some relatives in their massive Ladue estate, his views of the world had him seeing himself as a backup or even as a minor league goalie. But something funny happened when he started going to this wild, after hours practice at the St. Louis Mills Ice Zone. He started playing better. A lot better. He found new life, new meaning, and new purpose under the tutelage of Corey Hirsch, the goaltending partnership of fellow twineminder Jaro Halak, and some other person who fills out the metaphor I'm trying to make here. There's only one "lift" that we all hope Brian Elliott is able to perfect in the final stanza of this hockey year.
Alright, newbies. That should get you well on your way to understanding who's who on this fantastic Blues team.
BONUS: Top 11 Blues comparisons that didn't make the list
11. Darren Pang/ Literally any sort of leprechaun ever (It's just too damn stereotypical)
10. Bob Plager/ Rooster Cogburn (Plager is above comparison)
9. Eric Brewer/ HAL9000 (Been done before)
8. Andy Murray/ Francis X. Hummel (It's a long way to bring in The Rock, but both were right about a few injustices. Murray knew Perron could be better and Hummel knew that families of Black Ops KIAs were getting jobbed)
7. Roman Polak/ Some sort of big ass tree that's a pain in the ass to get around (too vague)
6. Bill Laurie/ Darth Vader (too obvious)
5. Chris Pronger/ Biff Tannen (If only he was still on the St. Louis roster)
4. Paul Kariya/ Jack Parkman (I can only do one Major League referenece. Sorry.)
3. Erik Johnson/ Rod Farva (Both should be arrested for being total and complete fuckheads. Also, I wanted to put in a Super Troopers reference)
2. Chris Beckford-Tseu/ Keyser Soze (Few are able to claim ever actually seeing these people. Thus, there is plenty of doubt as to whether either existed.
1. Al MacInnis/Juan Encarnacion (Too insensitive)
I didn't want to have all the fun myself, so there's a few players without comparison. Let me know who you'd compare to whom. Or who. Whoever.