Blog: St. Louis Game Time
Writers: Gallagher, Brad Lee, and AverageJoe (the bringers of Sunshine); Poor College Student, Bradflick55, and Hartigan (the makers of Rainbows); and Tomorrows Blues, Donut King, CrossCheckRaise, and Hildymac (the recipients of Puppy Dog Kisses)
Team: St. Louis Blues
Strength: Writing, opinions, and attitude keep folks interested.
Weakness: While I am no prude when it comes to language, sometimes it feels like some of the writers use certain words just because they can.
Warning: I will use the one they use in the print version of St. Louis Game Time – “St. Louis Game Time contains extreme sarcasm and less-than-gentle language. But it is a hockey paper, so you should […] just get over it.” So, as I have said previously, if this type of commentary bothers you, this blog is probably not for you.
Hidden Gem: There is usually an interesting video clip with the daily links posts.
Well, there is a first time for everything and the St. Louis Game Time blog is the first one I have encountered in this review process that is rabidly anti-one of my favorite teams, the Blackhawks. Plus, I started working on this as the Blues were beating my other favorite team, the Predators. However, I will do my best not to remind them more than once that the Predators and (thanks to the Wild) the Blackhawks are going to the playoffs. And, well, the Blues are hitting the Robert Trent Jones Golf Trail. Now, onto my review.
Compared to other blogs, St. Louis Game Time has a rather large writing contingent – ten contributors are listed on the blog, although three of them seem to be there as regular participants in game threads. However, that might not be a bad thing to have some folks dedicated to hanging out in the commenting sections.
The main writers are very engaging. Despite all of the Hossa “kicked in goal” talk last week, it has been enjoyable to read through the postings and comments on StL Game Time. The writers and commenters are very dedicated fans and truly bleed St. Louis blue. Their passion comes through, especially in the Game Day Threads.
Brian Weidler, also known as Tomorrows Blues, does a great job keeping readers abreast of the Peoria Rivermen in his regular “River Readings” and the Blues’ prospects in “Prospect Sunday.” For those interested in what the future will have in store for the Blues, these posts are very well organized and easy to digest. Another plus is the different contributors to the Links posts – Poor College Student, Bradflick55, and Hartigan. Gallagher’s game recaps provide an excellent analysis of how it went for the Blues – good or bad.
The posts to note include Poor College Student’s “Enhance Your Experience” series. These were well-written, funny, and, for those of us who are not Blues fans, included a little bit of insight to how they view things in the Gateway City. Another is the “What is Wrong with the St. Louis Blues?” post by Gallagher. A biting and honest analysis, Gallagher’s late season look at why the Blues seemed to have given up in March is well worth the read.
StL Game Time is the second blog (so far) I have come across that has a print counterpart (Second City Hockey and the Committed Indian were the first). Although quite a few pages – the first one that appeared on the search was a 28-page PDF – it is well done. One of the things I really liked in the print version of Game Time was the scorecard. Having spent more than a few afternoons in Wrigley Field as a child, keeping up with the scorecard was one of my favorite things. It made me miss having a scorecard when I am at a game.
There are a number of game day thread commenters, all of whom are very enthusiastic. I am not sure how often opposing team fans join in the discussions. The regulars tend to be a bit “gif” heavy when they post – especially seen in the game day thread for the last game of the season. And, similar to the Second City Hockey commenters, there seems to be a number of “insider jokes.” This might turn off some newcomers.
Final Thought: Overall, I found the St. Louis Game Time blog easy and fun to read. They made me laugh a few times, and offended me on one occasion (I’m a bit touchy when it comes to comments about Nashville hockey fans, but I can take a joke too).
So, that’s the St. Louis Game Time blog in my words. I also wanted to let the writers give you a few thoughts in theirs.
Four Questions for St. Louis Game Time:
Rebecca: How long have you been writing for StL Game Time?
Brian Weidler (Tomorrows Blues): St. Louis Game Time has been a part of the St. Louis sports scene since the season after the lockout, 2005-06. Game Time is actually the successor to the late, great “Game Night Revue,” (GNR) which had published for every Blues’ home game for years prior to the lockout season. The GNR, as it is affectionately known, was itself inspired by “The Blue Line,” a Chicago-based fan paper, and featured several writers who later went on to get Game Time off the ground; most notably, our publisher Sean Gallagher. I also wrote for the GNR, doing the same thing I’m doing now for Game Time, which is covering the team’s prospects and farm system. We have had an online presence to go along with our print edition since day one; first as a WordPress site, and for the last four years, on SBNation.
Rebecca: Why did you decide to start StL Game Time? / How did you start writing for StL Game Time?
Brian: As mentioned, Game Time was started as a response to the demise of the Game Night Revue. The GNR had developed a large and loyal following in St. Louis, but the publisher and driving force behind it decided during the lockout year that he had had enough, and that the 2003-04 season would be the last one for the GNR. Sean, unwilling to see such a beloved institution die, recruited a number of other like-minded fans of the GNR and writers like myself, and launched St. Louis Game Time when the 2005-06 season started.
Rebecca: What do you think StL Game Time offers readers that differs from other blogs?
Brian: Game Time offers readers a number of things that no other blog, or other media outlet in the St. Louis area, offers. First and foremost, Game Time offers its readers a no-holds-barred, unvarnished and unbiased look at St. Louis Blues hockey, warts and all. When the Blues play poorly, Game Time is the first to say so, and when the Blues play well, Game Time provides a fresh insight into the situation, one uncolored by an affiliation with the Blues. The online Game Time blog features [some of – editor] the best Game Day Threads to be found anywhere, with hundreds of posts every night and dozens of Blues’ fans – as well as fans of other teams – participating. Game Time in print features the best and most comprehensive coverage of the Blues’ prospect development system to be found in any source in St. Louis, and the online blog features a weekly “Prospect Sunday” that focuses on Blues’ prospects around the world, from Alaska to Zlin and all points in between.
Rebecca: Once the off-season starts, why should readers continue visiting StL Game Time?
Brian: Once the off-season begins, Blues’ fans will still find plenty at Game Time to keep them coming back. Prospect Sundays will continue as long as a single Blues’ prospect is playing anywhere in the world, and there will be in-depth coverage leading up to, and during, the NHL Entry Draft. Game Time will also be keeping our ears to the ground for news on the ongoing search for new investors for the Blues, as well as coverage of the free-agent market and the Blues’ involvement in it. There will be ongoing commentary, and probably a Game Day Thread or two during the Stanley Cup playoffs, as Game Time continues our mission to bring our readers the news of the NHL from a St. Louis point of view.