Blues Start Off Strong in the New Season

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Trevon Chestnut

St. Louis Blues alternate jersey that the team plans to wear seven times this year.

Tre Chestnut, Staff Writer

Worldwide, hockey is one of the most criminally underrated sports in terms of players and fans. Here in St. Louis, the Blues are a beloved and pivotal piece in our city’s culture. After starting the season on October 16, the Blues have posted six impressive wins and one loss.

Through seven games the best skater for the Blues have had is undoubtedly the young Jordan Kyrou. The 23 year old has netted two goals and dropped seven assists so far in the young season. Whether it’s weaving through defenders zone-to-zone or delivering a sweet cross zone pass, Kyrou is electric on the ice. Another high efficiency skater for the Blues is David Perron. He’s tied for fifth in the league for most goals with six on the young season. Other hot skaters right now are Ivan Barbashev, leading the team in the +/- category with seven and captain Ryan O’Reilly also has five points posted on the season so far.

In the midst of the exciting early season we interviewed Pattonville School District teacher and lifelong Blues fan Kelley Chestnut. Of course on every sports team there is always going to be the fan favorites; when asked about a favorite player on the team, Mrs. Chestnut said “Perron. Because I think his quickness and accuracy with the puck is overlooked but a crucial part of our team.”
This offseason the Blues lost key wing players Jaden Schwartz and Alex Steen. “No doubt they’re a loss but more in the locker room than the ice, but we have lots of young players that bring in that lost excitement,” Mrs. Chestnut said.
The main story for the Blues this summer however, was Vladimir Tarasenko and his disputes with the front office. For the past two seasons, fan favorite winger, Vladimir Tarasenko has played a total of 34 games due to shoulder injury. On July 7, 2021, Tarasenko demanded a trade from the Blues’ front office after being upset with the way they handled him on and off the ice, but after shopping around for trades, the Blues found no suitable moves for the right wing.
Mrs. Chestnut said, “Did not come as a surprise that he wasn’t agreeing with Berube’s style of play; I am surprised that since the season has started he and the coach have come to an agreement to put aside differences for the team.”
The entire offseason passed and at the start of training camp, there was Tarasenko in good shape and spirits. Of course this gives off some sort of bad view on Tarasenko, but fans are willing to look past that as we head throughout the season. “Not a huge Tarasenko fan, but I suppose the best you can hope for is that he stays healthy and plays as a part of the team and scores as many goals as he can.”
A new expansion team hit the ice this season for the first time. The Seattle Kraken, despite not having the nicest record, 3-5-1, have garnered many fans that are hoping for success in this new team. Former Blues’ winger, Jaden Schwartz was moved to the team this offseason and has notched four assists so far on the season. The Kraken are for sure going to be a fun franchise to watch in the future.
Heavy Stanley Cup favorites before the season started were the Avalanche and Lightning, but through the first few games, those two teams have certainly underperformed. The Tampa Bay Lightning have won the Stanley Cup the past two seasons in a row, and before this season started they were acclaimed to have a good chance at obtaining the rare three-peat. Tampa Bay has started off the season 4-4-1 all being high scoring games, especially the barn burner against the Red Wings.
The Colorado Avalanche however have had it rough in the early season. Strength of schedule is certainly the story for them having lost to three top five teams through seven games. The Avalanche were touted to have one of the best offenses in the league ahead of the season, but as of now they are 15th in the league for goals per game. Although there has been struggle early on for these two teams, the Lightning and the Avalanche certainly remain a threat to the rest of the league.
Despite the fact that it’s early in the season, the St. Louis Blues have proven to be one of the most elite teams in the NHL. Obviously, only one team can win the hoist up the Stanley Cup at the end of the season, but Blues fans are optimistic about our hockey team.
“As a Blues fan, my gut prediction says the Stanley Cup, but if we stay healthy and our young players grow we could be a playoff contender and wreak havoc on those other big teams.” Mrs. Chestnut explained. Ahead of the long season, the Blues certainly have their work cut out for them, but everyone back home in St. Louis will be supporting them every step of the way. Let’s go Blues!