Presumptuous (Yet Perfect) Power Play Prescriptions for St. Louis’ Punchless Pucksters

Gimme some juiceLike many people, I studied abroad in college. I “studied” in France, home of NHL and St. Louis Blues superstar Philippe Bozon. While there, I was dragged to a concert headlined by Orchestral Manoeuvres in the Dark, who were apparently more than a one-hit wonder in Europe. I was a bit bewildered by thousands of Frenchmen chanting “Electricite! Electricite! Electricite!” begging for one of OMD’s “hits.”

The St. Louis Blues could use some of that Electricite! right about now. While the team is off to a solid start, having gone 6-4 thus far to open the 2007-08 season, the power play, to put it charitably, stinks on home ice. During Saturday’s 4-3 win over Washington, the Blues had two extended five-on-three advantages and failed to score, despite Andy Murray deploying five forwards on the ice. Overall, the power play was just 2 for 27 on home ice (7.4 percent) entering last night’s game, tied with Phoenix and just ahead of Boston at the bottom of the league standings. A soporific 0-for-5 against the Coyotes may have dragged the Blues into the cellar.

What follows are four ideas to put the “advantage” back into the whole concept of drawing penalties.

1) More Chirpy Quebecois. Now that he has his skates all squared away, Blues rookie David Perron needs to see more ice time. Actually, he needs to get in games, period. The game against the Coyotes was only the fourth of the season for young David. After logging less than 5 minutes against Washington, Perron actually played a decent amount. A little speed and skill never hurts on the power play. Which brings me to…

2) Less Doug Weight. My falling out of love with Weight is well-documented here at MYFO. Weight may have been a solid PP performer at one point, but his reflexes have slowed noticeably. His passes are just a tad late. He misses shots into the open side of the net. Oh, and Doug: enough with the IMs. Don’t make me block you.

3) Counter the blackout with a Black-out. Instead of Martin Rucinsky and Steve Wagner on the second unit, why not Jamal Mayers and Bryce Salvador?

bryce.jpgjamal.jpg

4) SHOOT THE GODDAMNED PUCK. The Blues need a couple more Swedes and/or Russians before the cross-ice backdoor pass should be a regular part of their arsenal. Ditto with spinoramas, toe-drags and behind-the-back drop passes. Dipsy-DON’T.

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