Memorabilia Memories with Rick Ackerman
Since this is the last home game before Christmas, it will be my pleasure to share with you the secret list of what Santa is getting each of the Blues players this year. I am privy to this information because Santa is a big hockey fan (and collector of memorabilia) and faithfully reads my articles in St. Louis Game Time, proclaiming me as his favorite GT writer. So Santa (we are on a first name basis) chose me to relay this list to you, thinking it would be fun to see what he is giving as special gifts to the Blues this holiday season. It should be noted that Santa gives a gift commensurate to the level at which each player has performed, rewarding "good" boys with what they want and "bad" boys with what they need.
First, those who are performing at the highest level and exceeding expectations so far this season. Vladi Tarasenko is going to England to meet the FC Chelsea football team in the locker room before the match, and then sit with the coaches during the game. His favorite actor, Russell Crowe, will also attend the contest, and afterwards, they will jet to the Maldives for a couple of days in the sand and sun. He will then be joined in the Maldives at the One&Only Reethi Rah resort (the most exclusive and expensive resort in the world) by line-mate Jori Lehtera, who will bring along rapster Jay-Z after a royal concert in Dubai. Kevin Shattenkirk is going to the Cypress Point Club in Pebble Beach, CA for a day of golf with Tiger Woods, Emma Watson and Justin Timberlake. Jaden Schwartz will also make this trip, accompanied by Bubba Watson, Joe Sakic and Phil Mickelson, as will Brian Elliott, who will be teeing off with Bill Murray, Michael Jordan and Will Ferrell. Barret Jackman's foursome will include Bobby Orr, Garth Brooks and Bob Plager. After 18 holes, all the participants will be taken by limo to Clint Eastwood's mansion in Monterey for dinner and a discussion with Eastwood about film-making and the movie industry.
Alexander Steen will spend an evening with Bruce Springsteen, starting at the 801 Chophouse in Clayton and ending up with a private concert at Paul Stastny's place. Alex Pietrangelo will also attend, although he and Stastny will be having dinner at Steak-n-Shake (since they are currently minus players). T.J. Oshie is going to the Superbowl with his favorite rapper, Lil Wayne. David Backes will get to have President George W. Bush over to his house for dinner and discuss politics, as well as receiving a year's supply of Sensodyne toothpaste and pain pills. Jake Allen is going to the Lodge at Walters Cove near Vancouver on a fishing expedition (although he will have to wait until late June, the best month for salmon there). And Carl Gunnarsson will get to have both Conan O'Brien and Jimmy Fallon officiate at his upcoming bachelor party at the end of the season in June.
Max Lapierre is gifted with the new Bose Acoustic Wave Music System II and every recording Celine Dion has made, while Ryan Reaves also gets one along with all of Kanye West's CDs. Chris Porter gets a new 14 piece set of All-Clad Copper-Core cookware from Metrokitchen. Santa will be getting Jay Bouwmeester a new bicycle, a Fezzari Fore CR3 (plus accessories). Ian Cole will have Captain David Backes take him up into the lower stratosphere for a five-mile skydive with a new CPF Parafoil 2000 canopy. As an added bonus for both, the jump will take place over the Cayman Islands this June. Part time defensemen Chris Butler and Petteri Lindbohm will get separate rooms at the Ritz Carlton in Clayton as long as they are playing in St. Louis, with as much room service as they desire.
The Blues' Swedish delegation (Paajarvi, Berglund and Lindstrom) will all be gifted with a trade to the Edmonton Oilers, joining fan favorite David Perron on the team that is looking good to draft either Connor McDavid or Jack Eichel at the amateur draft this coming summer. This ties in with the present that Santa could be preparing for GM Armstrong and Coach Hitchcock and his assistants, right winger Jordan Eberle, who could join the Blues in exchange for the Swedes. A change of scenery is really what all four players need to enliven and spark their NHL careers. Steve Ott, without a goal so far, could also be part of this deal if the Oilers are willing to send back veteran Matt Hendricks to provide depth on the port side. This would also provide the Blues some space concerning the salary cap. Barring this fantasy-league trade, may Paajarvi, Ott, Berglund and Lindstrom be gifted with good health and some goals and more pluses than minuses the rest of the way this season.
And finally, Martin Brodeur will be presented by Santa with the opportunity to win his fourth Stanley Cup this June, his first with a team other than the New Jersey Devils. Of course, this is really the gift that all Blues' fans want from Santa, even if it is six months after Christmas. We are willing to and can certainly wait...
Here's wishing everyone reading this has a very Merry Christmas and may our ultimate hockey dream come true in June, 2015!