Something the St. Louis Blues have been lacking in the playoffs are goals. For Game 4 they’re going to be adding a player who can bring them just that.
Coach Ken Hitchcock is replacing Adam Cracknell with Russian phenom Vladimir Tarasenko. As Hitchcock tells Jeremy Rutherford of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, he thinks he deserves the shot to show he’s past the concussion that slowed down his season.
“Until the (concussion), he was a good player. He came back a little tentative from the injury,” Hitchcock said. “I think when you have a player who contributes like he does and is strong on the puck, determined as he is, and as big as he is, he is an asset that we can use.”
With four goals in three games and a 2-1 series lead, things could get dicey for the Blues if they can’t pot more goals. Tarasenko can do just that. He had eight goals in 38 games this season but only two of those after missing 10 games from his concussion. On the upside, both goals came against the Kings.
PHT’s Morning Skate takes a look around the world of hockey to see what’s happening and what we’ll be talking about around the NHL world and beyond.
Here’s a detailed look back at Sidney Crosby and Alex Ovechkin‘s first 10 years in the NHL. (NHL.com)
Speaking of Crosby, he’s signed a multiyear partnership with adidas. (Newswire)
Ryan Nugent-Hopkins will play a key role in easing Connor McDavid into the NHL. (Edmonton Sun)
After two polar opposite seasons, the jury is still out on Patrick Roy as a head coach. (Denver Post)
Marc-Andre Fleury enjoys pulling off pranks on his teammates. “I play better when I’m looser, laughing and having fun,” he said. (Pittsburgh Tribune-Review)
Art McDonald, a Canadian who won recently won a Nobel Prize, talked to the committee members about the Toronto Maple Leafs. (SB Nation)
The St. Louis Blues named Rob DiMaio their director of player personnel on Tuesday.
He’s been with the organization for some time. He joined as a pro scout in 2008 and was the pro scouting director starting in August 2012.
He was also a scout for the Dallas Stars before landing with the Blues (one would assume his biggest connection is GM Doug Armstrong, then).
In case his nose didn’t give it away, he also enjoyed a lengthy hockey career over 19 seasons.
No doubt about it, this is a pivotal season for the Blues after multiple campaigns in which strong regular seasons dissolved into playoff disappointments. Perhaps DiMaio can make a difference in a heightened role?