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@miendiem Interesting final question. I think it's an all of the above situation. The system works exceptionally well when everyone is giving it their all, but not so much when that effort slips. The same could be said for any strategy for that matter, but I think this year has proven that it's especially true for Hitchcock's strategy.


Fatigue is obviously an issue here, but I think personnel is a problem too. Hitchcock's strategy places a ton of pressure on the defensemen and encourages them to play ultra aggressive. Pinching in for example. When the quality of defensemen drops (say with an injury or cycling in various guys in the 6th slot), that strategy doesn't work so well. The team almost needed to come up with something new to fit the skill on the ice.


This may be a chicken or the egg discussion, but I'll admit that I'm pretty worried for the playoffs.

2 days, 14 hours ago on Conversation @ http://frozennotes.com/2015/hitchcock-says-blues-arent-following-directions.html

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@miendiem Here's a question I've been debating ... if the Blues stumble out of the playoffs in the first or second round, what happens to Hitch? First round seems like a dismissal...but I'm not sure where the line is as far as when his job is safe and when it's not.

2 days, 17 hours ago on Conversation @ http://frozennotes.com/2015/hitchcock-says-blues-arent-following-directions.html

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@miendiem Stamkos usually skates with a fairly large chip on his shoulder - a great quality, in my opinion - but that encounter with Backes wouldn't have gone too well. Stamkos is one of those guys I can't help but cheer for when the Blues aren't playing him. His talent is nuts.

3 weeks, 1 day ago on Conversation @ http://frozennotes.com/2015/infographic-t-j-oshie-before-and-after-oshie-os.html

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@LeviPhx Soccer actually does something similar, though minus the graphics. BeIn broadcasts have announcers in the United States even though the game is in Spain. Pretty interesting, really.

3 weeks, 1 day ago on Conversation @ http://bloguin.com/puckdrunklove/2015-articles/future-play-play-broadcasting-nhl.html

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@miendiem You mean he won't keep scoring on every 1 of 5 shots? Sad. :(

3 weeks, 2 days ago on Conversation @ http://frozennotes.com/2015/infographic-t-j-oshie-before-and-after-oshie-os.html

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@miendiem I personally lean towards keeping the home jerseys dark simply because I like the Blues and their current home colors and alternate quite a bit, but I can see the argument in switching it back too. Exposing fans to a bunch of different looks and colors when an opposing team visits is a worthy argument in favor.

4 weeks ago on Conversation @ http://bloguin.com/puckdrunklove/2015-articles/gary-bettman-discusses-teams-wearing-white-home-dark-colors-road.html

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@miendiem It's all about his eyes. After the puck leaves his stick, you can tell he knew exactly what he was trying to do.

1 month, 3 weeks ago on Conversation @ http://frozennotes.com/2015/gif-crazy-pass-from-jaden-schwartz.html

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@miendiem The list of teams wanting a forward who barely brings anything aside from speed to the table has to be pretty short. Especially with a contract north of a million this season. I feel bad for the guy ... but he really didn't leave a lasting impression in any of his game. That's including the longer look the Blues gave him last season.

2 months ago on Conversation @ http://frozennotes.com/

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@White17 Completely agree. He's one of the best when it comes to pressuring and containing the opposition within their own zone.

2 months, 1 week ago on Conversation @ http://frozennotes.com/2014/discussing-the-blues-bruins-trade-rumors.html

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@miendiem It's amazing that (in my opinion) Elliott is still an underrated goaltender despite a ton of stats to prove that he's above average. 

2 months, 1 week ago on Conversation @ http://frozennotes.com/2014/a-brian-elliott-trade-would-be-foolish.html

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@miendiem Don't get me wrong, your research is awesome. It's actually yielded some results I wasn't expecting. It'll be interesting to see how that progresses the rest of the way. Will they continue on that pace? We haven't really seen a significant losing streak this year and just about every team eventually goes through one, so I suppose we may have to check back on this.

2 months, 2 weeks ago on Conversation @ http://frozennotes.com/2014/blues-are-still-struggling-to-close-games-out.html

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@miendiem Great stats and research. My only counter would be the area of the ice those missed shots are originating from. For instance, Pietrangelo missed twice within 15ish feet twice against the Avs. Of course they also have the missed shots from the point, but I wish we could calculate (without spending days and days on this) and determine if the Blues are missing more often when they are closer to the net.

2 months, 2 weeks ago on Conversation @ http://frozennotes.com/2014/blues-are-still-struggling-to-close-games-out.html

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@miendiem The man advantage play has me particularly irritated as well. The strategy, as you mentioned, looks identical to what we saw last year. Puck is moved to the point and a shot is taken even if the shooting lane is blocked. There isn't any creativity, which is a waste seeing the talent the Blues have up front. It's as if the tactics are holding them back.



2 months, 3 weeks ago on Conversation @ http://frozennotes.com/2014/brodeur-loses-in-debut-teams-problems-more-evident-than-ever.html

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@miendiem As I mentioned on Twitter, I'd much rather see Bryz than Brodeur. I just can't imagine that Brodeur has much to offer considering his age and adding in the fact he hasn't been playing. Of course, Bryz hasn't been seeing any time either, but I think he's the better option. Probably a cheaper option too.


Personally, I don't want to see Binnington. I just don't think it'd go well. I could be wrong, but I want someone with some NHL experience in case (knock on wood) something else happens.

3 months ago on Conversation @ http://frozennotes.com/2014/blues-invite-martin-brodeur-to-practice-following-brian-elliott-injury.html

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@miendiem Without knowing what other pieces might be involved in a trade, I'm not sure I can support this deal. I would love to see Berglund bail, but I'm also mindful of the cap and what realistically we can expect from the Blues. 


What happens if we deal for Eberle, push our spending to the max and then there's a serious need on defense due to injury? We could find a cheap replacement or call up a youngster, but my bottom line is that a big deal this early may limit what the Blues can do later in the year.

3 months ago on Conversation @ http://frozennotes.com/2014/report-blues-may-be-talking-to-the-oilers-about-jordan-eberle-and-patrik-berglund.html

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@CollegeWolf Thanks! They're a lot of fun to put together. One of the highlights of the week!

3 months, 1 week ago on Conversation @ http://bloguin.com/puckdrunklove/

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@miendiem I'm pleased with it. You usually don't expect a trade to be made when the team is clicking, but it makes a lot of sense. It'll also be really interesting to see what Butler can bring to the table on the nights he plays.

3 months, 2 weeks ago on Conversation @ http://frozennotes.com/2014/jordan-leopold-traded-to-columbus.html

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@miendiem Good point with Miller and Stewart. I understand Berglund has his strengths defensively, but that point aside (and that is a strong point), I feel they are missing the boat offensively.

3 months, 2 weeks ago on Conversation @ http://frozennotes.com/

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@miendiem This would be one of just a handful of questionable contracts handed out by this front office. With that in mind, you almost have to wonder where pride comes in. It's as if no one wants to admit the deal was costly and perhaps a big mistake.

3 months, 2 weeks ago on Conversation @ http://frozennotes.com/

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@miendiem I'm planning on writing more about Allen soon. I think he's playing above almost all expectations. It's a small sample, but it's encouraging.

3 months, 3 weeks ago on Conversation @ http://frozennotes.com/2014/tarasenkos-heroics-masking-blues-troubles-on-offense.html

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@leftwingbarbara Nope. Why would I? They were funny.

3 months, 3 weeks ago on Conversation @ http://nyrangersblog.com/

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@miendiem I'm hoping it's a series with pranks on several players. Shows a fun side of the team.

4 months, 1 week ago on Conversation @ http://frozennotes.com/2014/video-ryan-reaves-pranks-kevin-shattenkirk.html

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@miendiem Looks like they've updated his status to week-to-week. Ugh.

4 months, 1 week ago on Conversation @ http://frozennotes.com/

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@miendiem I am genuinely surprised his response to the AHL demotion was so negative, especially considering he passed through waivers unclaimed. Assuming he still wants to play in the NHL, wouldn't the more direct avenue be through an AHL call-up rather than a lengthy stint in Europe?

4 months, 3 weeks ago on Conversation @ http://frozennotes.com/2014/blues-put-peter-mueller-on-waivers-to-terminate-his-contract.html

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@CUbsfan I think I like more GEICO ads than I do most of the other insurance ads out on the market. Personally, I have wayyyyyy more hate for Progressive ads than GEICO.

5 months, 3 weeks ago on Conversation @ http://awfuladvertisements.com/

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@CUbsfan Good point. I'll add that in.

5 months, 3 weeks ago on Conversation @ http://awfuladvertisements.com/

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@jpk0721 I went back and forth on Ovie several times. It was a difficult decision, but all of the moving parts around him should lead to a really interesting 2014-15.

6 months, 2 weeks ago on Conversation @ http://bloguin.com/puckdrunklove/

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@RyanG1984 @David Rogers @Kevin1157 Great comment. You're correct, I meant to type that they'd deserve an infraction for delay of game (2 minutes).

7 months ago on Conversation @ http://bloguin.com/puckdrunklove/2014-articles/7-rules-the-nhl-needs-to-change.html

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@Kevin1157 Why not change it to an icing call instead of a two-minute penalty?

7 months ago on Conversation @ http://bloguin.com/puckdrunklove/2014-articles/7-rules-the-nhl-needs-to-change.html

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@jrw924 I'm not an advocate of the plus/minus statistic, but it's certainly noticeable when you have a (-23) which ranks last on a pretty bad team. Butler did play the most games of any Calgary defenseman, so that's at least partially to blame, but it's still an ugly stat.


Still, I think Butler should do pretty well in his role as the 6th or 7th defensemen in St. Louis. I'm not overly worried about plus/minus as I am seeing what kind of chemistry and physicality he can bring to the group.

7 months, 1 week ago on Conversation @ http://frozennotes.com/2014/chris-butler-signs-with-the-blues.html

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@jrw924 It's sad how things worked out, but I agree with you. I think the Blues were pretty fair with their offers.

7 months, 2 weeks ago on Conversation @ http://frozennotes.com/2014/report-sobotka-will-spend-one-year-in-khl-before-returning-to-new-nhl-team.html

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@miendiem It's a shame that it took so long to develop too. Should the Blues be able to flip him now, you have to imagine it won't be for much considering all of the uncertainty. Probably could have gotten more before the Draft, but I'm guessing it was more of a surprise than most people think. If not, the Blues may have missed an opportunity to get a bit more for what appears to be a wasted asset.

7 months, 2 weeks ago on Conversation @ http://frozennotes.com/2014/report-sobotka-will-spend-one-year-in-khl-before-returning-to-new-nhl-team.html

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@jrw924 I think your last statement is extremely accurate. Ott probably will have a better year with the team's added depth which will allow him to slide into a role which better suits his play.

7 months, 2 weeks ago on Conversation @ http://frozennotes.com/

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@miendiem Honestly, how ridiculous would it be if you're a Leafs fan and they actually landed all 4? I'm betting a lot of loans would be taken out to afford all those tickets.

7 months, 2 weeks ago on Conversation @ http://bloguin.com/puckdrunklove/2014-articles/toronto-maple-leafs-want-to-host-everything-for-their-100th-birthday.html

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@miendiem Yeah, that's a fair guess. There are plenty of old, veteran netminders still out there, but I doubt any of them would want to spend any time in the AHL. Net is definitely an area of transition for the Blues.

7 months, 3 weeks ago on Conversation @ http://frozennotes.com/2014/ken-hitchcock-on-goaltending-this-is-brian-elliotts-job.html

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@miendiem Based on the current roster, who is your #3? If Allen or Elliott goes down with an injury, who comes up? Is that person on the roster yet?

7 months, 3 weeks ago on Conversation @ http://frozennotes.com/2014/ken-hitchcock-on-goaltending-this-is-brian-elliotts-job.html

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@miendiem 1A and 1B would make a lot of sense, but I still wonder how the Blues will handle Allen. I think I alluded to my thoughts in the "Two Big Questions" post, but it looks like Hitchcock is being a bit more cautious about the situation than I believed. Allen and is limited NHL experience will see time, but it's nice to see they'll ease him in.

7 months, 3 weeks ago on Conversation @ http://frozennotes.com/2014/ken-hitchcock-on-goaltending-this-is-brian-elliotts-job.html

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@jrw924 They really do. We'll have to wait and see what the actual sweaters look like, but that's what I thought of as well. I first believed the club was going to go back a bit further in their roots for the new sweaters, but these aren't bad either.

7 months, 3 weeks ago on Conversation @ http://frozennotes.com/2014/heres-the-rumored-new-blues-uniforms.html

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@miendiem I've also heard they may move to a lighter shade of blue. That sounds like a pretty risky move, depending on how light of a blue they actually would use.

7 months, 3 weeks ago on Conversation @ http://frozennotes.com/

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@jrw924 I didn't even think about keeping a sweater clean. That's a really good point from a fan's perspective.

7 months, 3 weeks ago on Conversation @ http://frozennotes.com/

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@miendiem I'd be pretty happy if the white patches on the home were removed. They really don't make much sense. I've heard rumors that the piping would be removed or more subtle, but we'll have to see what happens.

7 months, 3 weeks ago on Conversation @ http://frozennotes.com/

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@miendiem I actually don't mind the current uniforms. I own a Backes home sweater currently that I got a couple of years ago. I actually went this route because the alternates were so prevalent. I'm not quite as excited about the changes as some people are, but I am hoping the changes are mostly subtle.

7 months, 3 weeks ago on Conversation @ http://frozennotes.com/

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@miendiem Even when you disagree, though it may be minor, I'm left nodding my head. I'm definitely on board that Gunnarsson is an improvement over Polak, but I kind of wish the team would have added a physical upgrade over a puck-moving upgrade. I know I've said that before, but I think it's an issue few people are realizing needs to be addressed.

8 months ago on Conversation @ http://frozennotes.com/2014/two-big-questions-remain-for-the-st-louis-blues.html

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@miendiem I thought for sure the Lehtera deal meant that Stastny was as good as history. Never thought both would arrive. Now I'm really, really wondering where Berglund goes...

8 months ago on Conversation @ http://frozennotes.com/2014/blues-sign-paul-stastny-to-a-four-year-contract.html

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