The St. Louis Blues have been struck down, beaten, injured, battled with COVID, and held together with tape and bubble wrap. Nevertheless, the team has continued to move forward day after day. With only one week left until Christmas, there still seems to be plenty of time to ask for a few last-minute things. Some teams may wish for more goals, a better power play, or even a competent coaching staff and front office. Rumor has it that one team may not even have an arena because they didn’t pay their taxes!
Anyway, here are a few things that the Blues could certainly use as the calendar turns to 2022.
Blues Need Good Health
Santa, the best gift that you could give Blues fans and players this year is their health. Some will joke saying “at least you have your health,” but the Blues don’t even have that at times. At one point in time this season, the club was missing 12 individuals from their roster due to COVID-19 or injuries, including the starting goaltender Jordan Binnington. Currently, the team has eight players out due to injury or COVID, but they’re all getting better! It would be wonderful if the team could all stay healthy to make a long playoff run, maybe even grab another Stanley Cup! Boy, that sure would be nice.
Though the team cannot complain too much as other teams have been dealing with worse, the Blues would love it if the gift of health could be provided. To move on from COVID-19 complications and longstanding injuries would be most welcome.
Help on the Blue Line For St. Louis
The Blues have been blessed with depth in lots of areas, Santa. Five different goaltenders have played for the team this year and there has even been a large number of American Hockey League (AHL) players that have filled in for those that were injured or sick. One area that could still use some work is the defense.
Though they mean well, some players seem to be overextending themselves and being put in roles that they are either no longer suited for or were never suited for in the first place. The team needs someone big who can shut down other players, play lots of minutes, and does not cost too much. Do you know of anyone?
Extension for Berube
Santa, Craig Berube deserves a contract extension. Have you seen details about his time in St. Louis? In 2018-19 he was an assistant coach that was thrust into the head coach’s position after Mike Yeo was fired. That season, Berube and the Blues went from last place in the NHL to winning the team’s first Stanley Cup. Talk about historic! Then, in the 2019-20 and 2020-21 seasons, he had to coach through shortened seasons due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
In the 2019-20 season, the team even won the division title! Berube has helped coach a winning team despite the number of injuries, COVID-19 regulations, and last-minute changes to the lineup that have come his way. He’s won over 120 games with the Blues and earned points in about 63 percent of the games he has coached. He’s even done a great job keeping the Blues as one of the top-10 teams in the standings, power play, and penalty kill. He deserves an extension.
Another Stanley Cup For The Blues
One more thing, Santa. You probably hear this quite often from teams but another Stanley Cup would certainly be nice, too. It’s big, shiny, and plenty of people seem to enjoy holding it and drinking out of it. The city of St. Louis waited over 50 years for their first one and it would be swell if we could win another one too. After all, the Tampa Bay Lightning won two in a row, so why couldn’t we at least ask for a second in four years?
Thank you so much for reading this letter, Santa. Try not to eat too much milk and cookies or run over any grandma’s this year.
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Mike is a writer for The Hockey Writers and covers the St. Louis Blues since November of 2021. He has a keen love for statistical analysis, prospects, signings, and trades. Follow Mike on Twitter for further Blues or Central division hockey discussions, interview requests, or to provide content info.