In sports, attitude can be everything. The St. Louis Blues star scorer has just the mindset you want going into an unprecedented scenario.
The St. Louis Blues defense of their first Stanley Cup was always going to be difficult. Even under normal circumstances, the Stanley Cup is the most difficult trophy in all of sports to win. You could make a case for college basketball’s national tournament due to the one-and-done nature of it all, but I digress.
The problem now is the defense won’t happen under normal circumstances. Due to the pandemic, teams will be staying in quarantine bubble areas and playing in one of two cities instead of in their home rinks.
Being away from St. Louis might not affect the Blues as much as some teams. They played so well on the road in 2019 that it might actually be beneficial to be on the road.
Still, being in this bubble can have an odd affect on the mind. Just from personal experience, the initial stay at home portion of this quarantine was taxing on my mental well-being.
More from Editorials
- St. Louis Blues Need Kasperi Kapanen To Be On Best Behavior
- Hayes’ Debut And Other Bold Predictions for the St. Louis Blues
- St. Louis Blues Captaincy Is Suddenly A Huge Problem For 2023-24
- St. Louis Blues National Games Cause More Problems Than They’re Worth
- St. Louis Blues Brayden Schenn Has To Be An Impact Player In 2023-24
It throws things out of the norm. Athletes are creatures of habit and suddenly shifting schedules and game times and meal options can have an impact on performance.
As fans, we can sit there with our arms crossed and point to how much money guys make and say they should get over it. That’s not how humans work, regardless of how much money they make. Once the brain is conditioned in a certain way, some people react in a negative way when things are changed and it will impact them.
We have already seen it come up in the NBA and they have not even played a game yet. It got national attention when several players posted pictures of what was passing for a meal from their hotel service.
It was astonishing on multiple levels. First, you would think the teams could bring in their own meal prep service and, maybe, just use the hotel kitchen to prepare things.
Second, even for hotel food, it was paltry. Some of the pictures showed a meal that was smaller than you would provide for a kindergartner’s lunch. It was not something that would provide much energy or nutrition for a top-level athlete.
The NBA tends to have more money and more clout. Does that mean the NHL should expect prison level meals, i.e. stale bread and some water?
I highly doubt that will be the case, especially playing in Canada where hockey is king. However, even if it did turn out to be the case, the Blues star scorer Vladimir Tarasenko has the right mindset going in.
The Blues scorer is going into this bubble situation knowing they might not have five-star meals or their sleep schedules might be altered. According to Jeremy Rutherford’s reporting from a Zoom call between Tarasneko and reporters, those things won’t mess him up.
That is the kind of mentality your average fan wants from their team’s athletes. We all come from different backgrounds and live in different scenarios.
However, most of us don’t make the kind of money Tarasenko or any athlete does. So, often, we don’t want to hear how they are being denied this or that.
Tarasenko basically saying he’s going to play hockey, not a vacation at a fancy hotel is just what fans want and need to hear. When one of your most talented players has that mentality of pull up your bootstraps and get to work, it gives you a lot of confidence in this team’s ability to repeat.
Of course, you need an entire roster to have that same mentality and that’s difficult to get 20-plus guys on the same page. Even so, the Blues have proven themselves to be different.
They have the right coach to push that message. Their captain was the first guy in the media saying everyone wanted to get back and win another one. Now, you have their best scorer saying he just needs a bed and food and he’ll be good to go.
The Blues are poised. It’s all about execution now.