Kyle Wellwood.... huh.
Well, we've come this far trusting JD and Doug Armstrong, I don't see why we should stop now. Assuming that Kyle completes his release from his KHL team, is actually signed, and clears re-entry waivers, he will be the latest entry in the long list of players to wear the Note. It was a round-about way to get here, but you can't discount a guy completely, just because he didn't catch on with an NHL team in the off-season and went on to the KHL.... In Hockey, like in most things, you have to do what you have to do, to
What do we get? A player that's hungry to prove that he's still NHL-caliber talent. Statistically, he's been good for a point for every 3 games played in his last 3 NHL seasons. After an outlier season of .88 points per game, he followed through with seasons of 0.36, 0.36, and 0.33 points per game. His brief time in the KHL yielded 8 points in 25 games, an average of 0.32. So, if the Blues can expect consistent performances and a veteran presence (both of which would also speak to the team's needs) on a low risk contract, it should work out fine. Over the remaining 41 games of the season, that kind of production would translate to 13 or 14 points. I don't know about you all, but I can accept that.
The Enemy: Tonight's special is Duck. The Anaheim Don't-Call-Me-Mighty Ducks come into tonight's contest with a record of 23-18-4, good for 50 points and 6th in the Western Conference (not including Tuesday night's results). Most notably, they are riding the hot streak of Jonas Hiller- 154:50 consecutive minutes of shutout hockey. It would seem to be wise to end that streak as soon as possible. The leading scorer on the Ducks squad is Corey Perry with 21 goals and 45 points overall. Then there's the ancient Finn, Teemu Selanne, still showing the scoring touch with the next highest total, 37 points. At least we won't have to worry about Ryan Getzlaf; he's out with "nasal sinus fractures". Also, be wary of hot rookie talent Cam Fowler, who has just 3 goals but 18 assists on the year. They do not have the strong D of years past, but they definitely pack an offensive punch.
Blues vs Ducks coverage
The puck drops at 9 PM St Louis time, with TV coverage on FSMW and radio coverage on the venerable KMOX 1120AM. Here's a good place to look for web feeds. The GDT will drop shortly before that; until then, this is your pre-game warm-up and stretch. Gather here, gripe about the weather and traffic, bitch about the late starts, and continue the great Wellwood debate (unless some team poaches him from waivers, rendering this entire entry out of date). Also, in honor of the debut of young Philip McRae, enjoy a video of his old man Basil:
John Kordic vs. Basil McRae (via fracases)