Blues Goaltending Changes
[FONT="Verdana"][COLOR="Blue"]When I first read that Blues goaltender Hannu Toivonen was sent to the minors, I was pretty upset. I have been a huge fan of Toiv since his debut game for St. Louis. However, the upcoming schedule for the Blues is a fairly light one considering the hell they have been put through for the past few weeks. Starting goalie Manny Legace is very capable of handling this, thereby almost eliminating the need for a solid back-up goalie with plenty of experience. Downgrading Toiv to the Rivermen is a nice way for him to stay fresh. He will have more playing time than he would receive in the NHL and he will get a chance to regain his confidence after suffering major losses in the past couple of games he has played.
Another upside to Toiv being relieved of his back-up goaltending duties (for now) is that Marek Schwarz has an opportunity to gain more experience with the big-timers. Schwarz made his NHL season debut on December 9 in the game against Colorado where he stopped three out of four shots. He has been doing extremely well in his run with the Rivermen. He has a 8-6-2 record, .900 save percentage, and a 2.37 goals-against average. I think itís time for Schwarz to make a name for himself in the NHL and let hockey fans everywhere recognize that St. Louis is a force to be reckoned with.
With three great goalies for the Blues, it is no wonder that we are posting 50 points. Our offense has burst out of their slump with power. Our defense no longer seems to be sleeping at their posts. We have great players such as Brad Boyes, who is kickiní it with 25 goals (yeahhh, Boyes!), and Paul Kariya, who is leading the team with 40 points. I have to also mention the two rookies that I have been talking a lot about lately Ė Erik Johnson and David Perron, both of whom were just named to the NHL YoungStars roster. It has been a long time since I have been this impressed by a Blues rookie, not to mention two of them. St. Louis, you might become a hockey city yet.[/COLOR][/FONT]