Monday, March 9, 2009

Bouncing back

After a somewhat disappointing adventure for the Pittsburgh Penguins, I was looking forward to hounding the St. Louis Blues, in town to play the Tampa Bay Lightning, and restoring faith in my ability to snag more than a dozen autographs.

Thanks to the Blues, my confidence has been restored. Something about adding nearly 50 of the 68 autographs from St. Louis players, coaches and staff goes a long way toward that. Getting 21 pucks signed, including another for the 1,800th of the collection, didn't hurt, either.

By and large, the Blues were a great-signing team, with most of them, other than Andy McDonald, willing to sign multiples and strike up conversations with fans. At first glance, I'd say it was among the top five hounding sessions of the season.

If you're fortunate enough to have the Blues travel to your NHL city, you can find out for yourself.

Signing pucks, shown above, were:

Top row: David Backes, Cam Janssen and Andy McDonald
Bottom row: Jay McKee, Keith Tkachuk and Brad Winchester

Though 21 pucks is impressive, the 25 cards added to the day's haul is nothing to sneeze at.

Top row: David Backes (3), Chris Mason (4), Jay McClement (2) and Andy McDonald
Bottom row: Jay McKee (4), Alexander Steen (2), Brad Winchester (2) and Jeff Woywitka

Defenseman Carlo Colaiacovo, who joined the team recently from the Loafs, signed these four speciality cards.

As did teammates, from left, Jay McClement, Roman Polak, who signed two, and Brad Winchester.

Other highlights from a full day of hounding:

~ A couple of pucks from Hall of Famer Bernie Federko;
~ Ten pucks from five players;
~ Brad Boyes and Barret Jackman on the Team Canada jersey;
~ T.J. Oshie keeping his word to sign after the morning skate;
~ Catching up with Blues rookies, Patrik Berglund and Ben Bishop;
~ Marveling, once again, at the beauty of Colin's team sheets; and
~ A not-so-ordinary team sheet of Blues mascot Louie.

If you have the time, don't forget to check out the Blues photo gallery.

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