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Thread: (W 4-1) Blues v. Wild / Series Thread / Wild's Tee Time / April 22th @ 5:30 pm CDT

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    Default (W 4-1) Blues v. Wild / Series Thread / Wild's Tee Time / April 22th @ 5:30 pm CDT

    First, this is not a GDT. It's the first round series thread.

    Second, if you are going to start a Blues playoff GDT, come correct. If you picked the Wild in 6 or 7, then fuck right off. Last year I remember TBF, MEG, JA, maybe SG (?) starting winning GDTs, if I've forgotten someone, I apologize. Otherwise, look deep within yourself before you hit "post new thread".

    Here's the schedule (all times CDT) & channels to date. Neither Stastny nor Bortuzzo nor Yakupov skated today.

    G1: Wed, 8:30 NBCSN
    G2: Friday 7 NBCSN
    G3: Sunday, 2 p.m. NBC
    G4: Wednesday, 8:30 NBCSN
    G5: April 22 TBA
    G6: April 24 TBA
    G7: April 26 TBA
    As far as I know, & what I don't know in this town ain't worth knowing, the cops haven't closed any of your dives
    & the D.A. hasn't touched any of your rackets. You haven't bought any license to kill bookies, & today I ain't sellin' any.
    So take your flunky and dangle.



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    Previews



    Minnesota Wild (106 pts) vs. St. Louis Blues (99 pts)

    Head-to-head: The two teams split the season series, 2-2-1, with the Wild outscoring the Blues 14-11 overall.

    Minnesota strength: The Mikko Koivu-Mikael Granlund-Jason Zucker line has a 65.6 goals for percentage (No. 1 in the West among lines with more than 350 minutes together)

    Minnesota weakness: Devan Dubnyk's .902 even-strength save percentage since March 1 (worst in the NHL among goalies with more than 10 starts)

    For most of the season, Bruce Boudreau's bunch were the best team in the Western Conference. A major reason for their rise was the performance of their 1A line of Koivu, Granlund and Zucker. The veteran captain Koivu offered solid defensive play, allowing Granlund and Zucker to use their speed and skill to produce career-high point totals. The Wild's depth was bolstered by Eric Staal. Staal's 65 points were his highest total since 2011-12, and he also dominated puck possession.

    Even during a recent slump, Minnesota has still produced goals and scoring chances. Its goaltending, on the other hand, has not held up. Despite posting the league's second highest overall save percentage since joining the Wild in 2014-15, Dubnyk has struggled for more than a month leading into the postseason. And as reliable has he's been during the regular season, he has an .896 all-situations save percentage in 16 career playoff games.

    St. Louis strength: 51.3 shot attempts against per 60 minutes (No. 2 in the West)

    St. Louis weakness:.907 all-situations save percentage (No. 22 in the NHL)

    They may have changed coaches in the middle of the season, but the Blues are still the Blues when it comes to limiting opponents' shot totals. Their bevy of talented forwards and solid top two defensive pairings, combined with Mike Yeo's defensive savvy as a coach, have allowed them to clog the neutral zone and play effective -- if sometimes boring -- hockey. The addition of Vladimir Sobotka only bolsters their depth with another strong two-way winger.

    Goalie Jake Allen has turned things around in the second half of the season, but he remains a wild card. In 11 playoff appearances, Allen has just a .902 save percentage.

    The pick: Wild in six. As much as Yeo will try to slow down his former team, the Wild's offensive game will be too much for the Blues to handle.

    As far as I know, & what I don't know in this town ain't worth knowing, the cops haven't closed any of your dives
    & the D.A. hasn't touched any of your rackets. You haven't bought any license to kill bookies, & today I ain't sellin' any.
    So take your flunky and dangle.



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    http://www.stlouisgametime.com/2017/...ey-wildnerness


    I chatted with Joe Bouley of Hockey Wilderness, and we’ve exchanged some questions and answers regarding the Blues’ first round matchup tomorrow night with the Minnesota Wild. My answers to his questions can be found right here, and his, obviously, can be found below.

    1) What do you think Bruce Boudreau needs to get the Wild to do so he can get over his playoff hump?

    If you look back on his playoff record, he's dealt with superstar players not playing well. Couple that with goaltenders having issues stopping the puck, and Boudreau has really just had issues with his team failing to meet the challenge of the post season. He'll need his Wild team to use their scoring depth to their advantage as well as have Devan Dubnyk return to his December/January form.

    2) How high is your confidence in Devan Dubnyk right now?

    If the playoffs had started a month ago, I would have had zero doubt in my mind that Dubnyk would have had the edge in a Wild series with just about anyone. After a month of some brutal goaltending, I can't say that I'm all that confident. Now, he has been slowly getting back to form since the calendar flipped to April, but if Dubnyk can't find his game, there isn't anyone behind him that can save the Wild's hopes.

    3) How much do you think that the Wilds' depth will play into success against the Blues?

    I think it's the one key advantage in the series. Minnesota has been able to find scoring up and down the line up while the Blues have Tarasenko, Berglund, and just a smattering of players after that. Now, the Wild have been taken advantage other teams' Big Knockers knocking. Just look at how Alexander Ovechkin, Patrick Kane, Jamie Benn have fared against the Wild. If Tarasenko can get the Blues up early, the defensive system by Yeo can steal games.

    4) What do you see going differently this year in the post-season as opposed to last season?

    Last post-season, the Wild were a battered bunch. They didn't have Zach Parise and didn't have the kind of center depth that they do now. Minnesota was lucky to get the series against the Stars to six games. This season, the Wild are healthy, they're finding the back of the net (3.21 GF/G), and since the Martin Hanzal trade, are not only controlling scoring chances, but now control shot-attempts. I expect a good series with hopefully Minnesota coming out victorious on the other end.

    5) How do the Blues stack up as a first round opponent as compared to the Dallas Stars?

    The Dallas Stars had terrible goaltending and a defense that could be exploited...and ultimately were, just not by Minnesota. The Blues have big, tough, physical defensemen, and a goalie who has found another level to his game. Couple that with Yeo's systems and the Blues are going to be tough as hell to score against.

    6) Which players on the Wild are you relying on for secondary offense, and who do the Blues need to shut down to be successful?

    Let me go through the list: Nino Niederreiter had himself a fine season and has found a way to get hot near the end of the regular schedule. He's big, likes to take residence at the top of the crease on the power play and has a wicked wrist shot. Just ask Avalanche fans. Jason Zucker had a breakout year. Eric Staal had a great bounce back year. Erik Haula has found himself on the score sheet more often recently. Martin Hanzal took a while to acclimate to the Wild, but is finding his groove. Joel Eriksson Ek, the 2015 first round pick, is back from Sweden and hopes to factor in to the scoring from the fourth line.

    The Blues should key in on the line of Mikko Koivu and Mikael Granlund, but there are other lines that will hurt you. But if I were to choose a line that St. Louis should take away, it starts with that one.

    7) Is this the first round matchup that you wanted, or would you rather've had the Predators as your opponent?

    Great question. The Blues aren't an easy draw, nor should they be taken lightly. That said, we've witnessed first hand the slow, defensive game that Yeo employs and while that can win games, it's not fun to watch. So, for entertainment purposes, we would've liked Nashville, but this series has great storylines and history having just played each other just two seasons ago.

    8) Same final question as yours - how do you see the series playing out?

    I've said it for a while: Yeo's system can win games, but I feel the Wild's depth will win out. Barring Dubnyk playing like he did in March, I see this going six games and Minnesota winning. Now, that actually differs from other Wild fans on Twitter. Some say that, out of any series, this one has the chance to be a sweep. I just could not disagree more with that line of thinking.

    Other, neutral folks on social media have St. Louis winning. I can see why they think that, and can't really defend against it either. It absolutely depends on which Devan Dubnyk shows up.
    As far as I know, & what I don't know in this town ain't worth knowing, the cops haven't closed any of your dives
    & the D.A. hasn't touched any of your rackets. You haven't bought any license to kill bookies, & today I ain't sellin' any.
    So take your flunky and dangle.



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    Quote Originally Posted by marco View Post





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    As far as I know, & what I don't know in this town ain't worth knowing, the cops haven't closed any of your dives
    & the D.A. hasn't touched any of your rackets. You haven't bought any license to kill bookies, & today I ain't sellin' any.
    So take your flunky and dangle.



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    Quote Originally Posted by ppg shg View Post
    First, this is not a GDT. It's the first round series thread.

    Second, if you are going to start a Blues playoff GDT, come correct. If you picked the Wild in 6 or 7, then fuck right off. Last year I remember TBF, MEG, JA, maybe SG (?) starting winning GDTs, if I've forgotten someone, I apologize. Otherwise, look deep within yourself before you hit "post new thread".

    Here's the schedule (all times CDT) & channels to date. Neither Stastny nor Bortuzzo nor Yakupov skated today.



    Compared to most other teams' videos, this one is total trash.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Glovey View Post
    Compared to most other teams' videos, this one is total trash.
    As far as I know, & what I don't know in this town ain't worth knowing, the cops haven't closed any of your dives
    & the D.A. hasn't touched any of your rackets. You haven't bought any license to kill bookies, & today I ain't sellin' any.
    So take your flunky and dangle.



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    I'm gonna miss the fat guy gifs. Somebody get Yeo in some eating contests this offseason.

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    I can live with this as the all encompassing first round thread.
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    Paul Stastny didn't skate on Tuesday, which likely means he won't play Wednesday when the Blues start their playoff series with the Minnesota Wild, but the arrival of Vladimir Sobotka is giving coach Mike Yeo a chance to get creative with his lines.

    It looks as though the Blues will start with rookie Ivan Barbashev centering Jaden Schwartz and Vladimir Tarasenko on the top line. Magnus Paajarvi, Patrik Berglund and David Perron are reunited on the second line, which allows Yeo to use Sobotka on the left wing, Jori Lehtera at center and Alexander Steen at right wing on the third line. (The fourth line stays the same: Scottie Upshall, Kyle Brodziak, Ryan Reaves.)

    "To be honest, I'm really excited," Barbashev said, "especially with those guys in the playoffs. It's awesome. I don't know, just really happy about it and I'm looking (forward) to the first playoff game."

    Yeo has not hesitated to give the team's youngsters a chance. "Yeah, he's been doing that since he was here and it's awesome to be honest," Barbashev said. "He gave us a chance and we're just trying to improve."

    Steen had been, until recently, centering Schwartz and Tarasenko on the top line."You know me, I'm up for anything," Steen told the Post-Dispatch's Jeremy Rutherford. "It's a good line. I think throughout this series, you'll probably see some different looks. It depends on whether we're on the road or at home. We'll start getting into details on possible matchups and stuff, but I'm excited. Sobie looked good in his first game. Jori is an extremely smart centerman, very good on faceoffs, so hopefully we start with the puck more often than not and off we go."

    With the Wild having the final change in Games 1 and 2, Yeo feels these lines allow the team to matchup well regardless of who the Wild put on the ice.

    "That was part of the thought process there," he said. "We thought Magnus played real well with Bergie and Perron, that line was really effective for us and we feel that group with Lehtera and Sobotka now, they not only do they have the ability to be defensive and tough to play against, but obviously we need everybody contributing at different points. We can't have a situation where we have one line going out there and they're the only ones that can score and if they do, great, and if they don't, we're in trouble. That's the way playoffs go. You put your best team game out there, we go out there and we lay it on the line and every night a different guy has a chance to be the hero. We feel we're set up that way.

    "When you go on the road, they're dictating the matchups, they have the last change. It's always a point of focus for us as a staff. Certainly the more depth you have, the more trust you have throughout your lineup, then you don't have to try to hide anybody. Matchups go more than one way for us. Sometimes it's personnel related, sometimes it's situation related, whether it's D zone, whether it's offensive zone."

    In addition to Stastny, Robert Bortuzzo (upper body) and Nail Yakupov (dinged up) didn't skate. Zach Sanford and Dmitrij Jaskin
    look to be the healthy scratches. The Blues have no healthy spare defensemen at the moment
    So it seems like the Blues are putting together a true shut down line.
    As far as I know, & what I don't know in this town ain't worth knowing, the cops haven't closed any of your dives
    & the D.A. hasn't touched any of your rackets. You haven't bought any license to kill bookies, & today I ain't sellin' any.
    So take your flunky and dangle.



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    On paper Minnesota should win this. Their forwards are better and deeper. They have great center depth. Second line skill on fourth line.

    The Blues when healthy have not had a first line center and have trash in Lehtera. They also enter tomorrow without Stastny and are losing big face-offs.

    The lines at practice for both teams:

    Niederreiter-Staal-Parise
    Haula Koivu Granlund
    Zucker Hanzal Coyle
    Eriksson Ek Pominville

    Schwartz-Barbashev-Tarasenko
    Paajarvi-Berglund-Perron
    Sobotka-Lehtera-Steen
    Upshall-Brodziak-Reaves

    But on ice, the Wild has been one of the worst teams in February and March. They lost 14 of 18 and even after playing better in final ten they went 5-3-2. Dubnyk hit or wall or whatever and went to shit for the entire month of March.

    The Blues have second best record in league since coaching change, best gaa and only two regulation losses in last 19 games. They have been competitive in every game outside of the Jets game. They also have been outstanding on the road in the second half.

    In other words I have no clue how this is going to go. Their forwards and center depth scares me.
    Last edited by Jack Adams; 04-12-2017 at 08:21 AM.
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    I hope we win.
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    really enjoyed ppg's serious opening salvo. that's the kind of white hot intensity we are all going to need.


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    Ok so how does this years team match up to last year? Need to know what to expect this year

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    i just got nervous
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    If we face the November/December Wild we're screwed.

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    Must get points?

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    Fuck an 830PM start in Minnesoda
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    Time to make like Marvin and Let's Get It On.

    Can't wait. We're going to have a good, long run. Watch out, NHL.
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    So which media member was Game Time mean to so they lost their press access?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Catfish Hunter View Post
    So which media member was Game Time mean to so they lost their press access?
    I bet it was Kerber
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    Quote Originally Posted by Catfish Hunter View Post
    So which media member was Game Time mean to so they lost their press access?
    i would love to hear the details of that story.


    Jeff seems pretty perturbed on the twitters last night.
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    I want to see both of Perron's skates in the crease every time his line is in the offensive zone in the first period. He is just the type of player to get under Dubnyk's skin.

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    Quote Originally Posted by ppg shg View Post
    First, this is not a GDT. It's the first round series thread.

    Second, if you are going to start a Blues playoff GDT, come correct. If you picked the Wild in 6 or 7, then fuck right off. Last year I remember TBF, MEG, JA, maybe SG (?) starting winning GDTs, if I've forgotten someone, I apologize. Otherwise, look deep within yourself before you hit "post new thread".
    Love this.

    As for last year's playoff GDTs, I believe I did, but not entirely certain. Nevertheless, I agree, strong, positive vibes only. Leave the nonsense out. I sincerely believe we're up for this series.






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