So the damn Chicago Blackhawks are in town. You might remember our hockey squad from our town has a problem with Those Fuckers Up North (TFUN). I'm sure it will be a spirited contest with the puck and the stick. Go team.
So down below, we'll have more info about buying tonight's Game Time paper that we're selling outside the Blues game. But before we get to the business part of this relationship, let me give you some stuff first.
In my editor's column tonight, I wrote about some of the various excuses, I mean theories, people have come up with to explain the start of the season for these St. Louis Blues. And of course we got to the infamous words: buy in. Hitchcock used it in his post-game comments Thursday:
Just cause you have the same group back doesn't mean they want to play the same way. The way we have to play for success is tough. It's hard playing that way. It's really hard playing that way, but very successful. So the decision the coaches have to sell and get the players to BUY IN is to play the right way. This isn't skill ahead of work. We're guilty of that sometimes. This is an attitude about making the next play the next play, forcing the next play. This is really forcing offense and putting yourself in a very vulnerable position defensively. What happens is you're not on the same page. We need to get on the same page and value checking. A big part of checking is managing the puck the right way.
He also mentioned the gambles the defensemen are taking. He said on some plays the blueliners are so hyped to join the play, they get ahead of the forwards. Now that isn't exactly what happened on the second Vancouver goal (the back-breaker that opened the floodgates for the Canucks), but it's close.
The Blues had come down on the rush and the Vladimir Tarasenko and Jaden Schwartz line (because it's built around them and the third guy is benefiting from what they've done) created a helluva chance for Jori Lehtera. He put a shot off the stretched left pad of Ryan Miller. The rebound came to the corner. And that's when shit got bad. Suddenly the momentum of all three forwards carried them deep inside the Canucks' zone. In fact, all three were past the end red line. Defenseman Jordan Leopold should have seen this and acted judiciously. Instead, he came drifting in and tried laying the lumber on a Canucks player who suddenly had the puck instead of playing smart puck support or just plain defensive positioning close to the blueline. When he tried to check, he took himself out of the play and the Canucks had a two-on-one chance from their faceoff dots until they scored. It was one of the longer two-on-one breaks you'll see.
The Blues need to play smarter, settle the fuck down and make sure they know where Brent Seabrook is on the ice at all times and never let that dipshit breath.
The paper. In January we will mark 20 years since a fan-run paper was first sold outside Blues home games. This is the first season we're offering single copy sales electronically from the website. Go to our secure server, pay $3,tonight's issue is yours compared to the $4 hard copy cost downtown. Now we do offer $2 an issue for a season-long subscription. For more information, email me at gtbradlee at gmail dot com.
And thanks for reading, you animals.