Gifts I want from the
St. Louis Blues
Hopefully you aren't sick of articles about the Holiday season because here comes another one. The 25th is right around the corner and it's time I unveil my wish list for the St. Louis Blues. I promise I've been a good fan and I, like all of you loyal fans, deserve at least a few items on this list to come true.
For Christmas, I want all of the Blues to stay healthy. I expect the occasional minor setback as those are nearly inevitable, but I want all of the Blues to avoid any of the major injuries we've seen take place around the league so far in 2011-12. The Blues have put in their dues with Andy McDonald sidelined and David Perron missing the start of the year, now a huge gift to me would be the rest of the roster remaining healthy as we head into 2012. We've seen what this team can do with most of its players healthy, lets see what it can do through the remainder of the year.
A Power Play
I almost feel greedy asking for this one, given the team's recent success. With that in mind, I'm not asking for the Blues to have the #1 ranked power play in the league. Instead, I'll settle with the Blues being ranked some place in the middle, say 15th or 16th. Currently the Blues rank last, or 30th, with a power play that converts 10.6% of the time. To date, the power play has been embarrassing though it has improved with the return of David Perron.
My list for Christmas begs the Blues to improve on their power play, by maybe seven to nine percentage points. Doing so would place them right in the middle of the pack as far as power play success goes and I'd no longer have to avert my eyes when the Blues have the man advantage.
2010-11 Chris Stewart
Santa, if you're listening, please send the 2010-11 version of Chris Stewart to us. I'm not sure who this guy we've had so far is, but he isn't the same guy we saw that first came over to the Blues following his trade and took the offense by storm.
You remember, don't you? The Chris Stewart that had 15 goals and eight assists for 23 points in a 26-game span. The guy that looked like he had one of the most dangerous wristers in the league. A guy that looked poised to score 35+ goals in 2011-12.
The reality is that to date, prior to the team's game against Phoenix on the 23rd, Stewart has looked very average. He has five goals and seven assists for 12 points in 30 games. Granted, he did look better in the team's last game against Colorado, but overall he has been a shadow of his former self. For Christmas, I want Stewart to find his form. If he does, the Blues may make the jump from fringe contenders to a team that should be feared.
An Improved Marketing Effort
This final gift is one that doesn't take place on the ice. The St. Louis Blues marketing efforts the past two years have been horrendous - and that's being kind. From the "Pay half now, half when we make the playoffs" debacle to the embarrassing "Don't Stop Believing" campaign that fortunately got canned before the national eye could make fun of us too much, the Blues are destined for a marketing win in the coming year.
I want them to return to the glory days, when we had "Whatever it Takes" and my personal favorite, "Do you Bleed Blue?".
A Steady Ownership
Finally, I ask for a new owner. The Blues are still in limbo off the ice and as a result, can't really even begin to make contract decisions about guys like T.J. Oshie or any other skater until they know where the money is coming from.
My gift can be that the ownership resolves itself, preferably in the near future. This way the Blues can move forward, focus purely on the things happening on the ice, and make bids towards players that will help their ultimate goal of winning the Cup.