Thursday, August 25, 2005

 

Introducing Andy Strickland

Now something for you Blues fans...(I know you'd like a scorer, but this is the next best thing)

Andy Strickland will be a blogger on hockeybuzz.com and I couldn't be happier. This guy is passionate and very, very tied in. If it is happening in St. Louis, or with a Blues player, Andy knows about it...I have been so fortunate to meet people like this as a result of the blog.... People that are young, hip and love this sport like no other. He is a person like myself, and many of you who read this, that will not let hockey die. It took about five minutes into my first conversation with him to know that I needed him on my team.

Andy Strickland covers the NHL for legendary radio station KMOX in St. Louis, Missouri. A graduate of Northern Arizona University, Strickland's hockey coverage has taken him to the World Cup of Hockey, the Stanley Cup Playoffs, the NHL All star Game, the NHL Draft, The Ontario Hockey League playoffs, as well as doing Play By Play in the United Hockey League during the NHL lockout. He is a frequent contributor to radio shows throughout Canada and the United States.

Here is a preview of Andy's work...Welcome Aboard!

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It looks like it won't be long before St. Louis Blues owner Bill Laurie pawns the NHL franchise.

I spoke with Robert Caporale, chairman of Game Plan LLC, the Boston Based company the Blues hired to orchestrate the sale, He told me the next step is to come to St. Louis to make a presentation to the various groups that are interested in purchasing the Blues. He would not confirm exactly how many groups have expressed serious interest ( at least four that we know of). Caporale said he expects a front runner to emerge in the next 30 days, and that the team could be sold by the end of the calendar year. Caporale also said none of the parties have expressed interest in moving the team outside of St. Louis.

A good source told me today that Tony Novelli of Apex Oil, a company based in St. Louis, has recently emerged as the front runner, although Caporale would not confirm that. Caporale also said it is realistic that two seperate companies could own the Blues and the Savvis center. It has been reported that AEG, a company out of Los Angeles, has expressed interest in buyng the Savvis Center, Caporale told me that if a separate company owned the Savvis, it would not jeopardize the chances of the Blues staying in St. Louis, noting the Blues are the primary tenant.

Also the anticipation of knowing the future of future hall of famer Al Macinnis is coming to an end. 

I spoke to Al Macinnis today.  He will meet with Blues General Manager Larry Pleau this week to decide his future as a NHL player. He told me he really hasn't made up his mind and hopes to make a decision by early next week. This may come as a surprise to many considering the seriousness of Macinnis's eye injury. Back in February Macinnis was one of the better players on the ice playing in a charity game that included Rob Blake, Chris Pronger, Keith tkachuk, Brett Hull, Joe Nieuwendyk, Gary Roberts, Robert Esche, and Adam Foote ( just ask Esche if Al can still shoot the puck). Following the game many of Al's peers were raving about how well played and encouraged Al to come back for one more season. Macinnis said he is in good enough shape to play and has been doing a little bit of skating. Pleau, who confirmed the meeting, told me this will be 100% Al's choice, I don't get the feeling the Blues will push Al in either direction. Al understands he needs to make a decision soon and said he will not participate in training camp just to get a feel if he can still physically play at this level. Many of Macinnis's current teammates feel that Al should not risk further injury to his eye. Expect an announcement from Al by early next week, whatever decision Al makes, it won't change the fact that Al is one of the classiest people in history of the sport.

More to come,

Andy Strickland

feel free to e-mail me @ abs9kmox@hotmail.com



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