Daily Grind 2.9

Blues play at the Prudential Center tonight where a future HOF goalie is likely out. Plus, Walt Jocketty signs Ryan Ludwick, and some star NFL free agents.

Tonight the Blues are in New Jersey to face the Devils in another cross conference showdown. The Blues are now 10-0-2 dominating Eastern Conference teams this season.

Martin Brodeur in the pre-game warmup in Calgary

Martin Brodeur (Image via Wikipedia)

The Devils are playing good hockey, riding a 5 game win streak, and stand 7-2-1 in their last 10 games.

Martin Brodeur is likely out for tonights game as he nurses a ankle injury suffered in Tuesday’s 1-0 win over the Rangers.

Johan Hedberg will get the call for NJ. Hedberg is 13-7-1 with a 2.52 GAA in 2011-2012. For his career, he is 5-2 with a 1.96 GAA against St. Louis. Uh oh.

Jarsoslav Halak is in net for the Blues. He is 2-7 on the road this season and 2-3 in his career vs. the Devils.

The injury bug is getting contagious. Forward Matt D’Agostini joins Jason Arnott, Alex Steen, and Andy McDonald on the broken list. Evgeny Grachev and Chris Porter are both in the lineup tonight. Grachev’s big body should slow down the high flying Devils.

New Jersey will be a pretty good test for the Blues’ offense. Between Ilya Kovalchuk, Zach Parise, and Patrik Elias–the Devils can score some goals.

How long will it take for Cam Janssen to drop the gloves against his former teammates?

MLB News and Notes

Ryan Ludwick

Ludwick (Image via Wikipedia)

Cincinnati’s signing of OF Ryan Ludwick is a good one. He will play 81 games at Great American Ballpark, where the ball has no trouble leaving. He owns a career .276 average @ GAB. In 30 games, he’s hit 9 home-runs with 21 RBI’s. Another Walt Jocketty specialty? I’ll have more on the Reds in an upcoming baseball preview of the NL Central … The Reds are an interesting bunch.

It’s great to hear Adam Wainwright is looking sharp with his command this early in Spring Training.

Here’s a surprise: Oakland P Rich Harden is out for the entire season with a shoulder injury.

Roy Oswalt has suitors, but not for his price.

Texas locked up Nelson Cruz (2 years/$16 million) and Elvis Andrus (3 year/$14.4 million)

NFL

The Free Agent list has some goodies.

Mario Williams (HOU), Cortland Finnegan (TENN), Calais Campbell (ARZ), Vincent Jackson (SD), Carl Nicks (NO), and LaRon Landry (WASH) would look great in blue and gold.

English: Vincent Jackson, a player with the Sa...

V-Jax (Image via Wikipedia)

Realistically, V-Jax makes a ton of sense. He’s 29 years old, seems to have matured from his two DUI’s, and had a productive 2011…1106 receiving yards for 9 TD’s.

If the Rams could land V-Jax, Finnegan, and re sign Brandon Lloyd, that would be fantastic.

It would likely lead to selecting USC OL Matt Kalil with the #2 overall pick.

Look for the 2009 #2 overall bust Jason Smith to be cut relatively soon–or at least a restructured contract. Smith has appeared in just 29 of 48 games and is due a $10 million base salary in 2012, but only $1 million of it is guaranteed.

49ers coach Jim Harbaugh insists that the organization unanimously stands behind free agent Alex Smith as the 49ers’ preferred quarterback.

“We’re all in lockstep as an organization that Alex Smith is our guy,” said Harbaugh. “It’s well-documented. You saw the way he played this year. (He is a) tremendous leader on our football team.”

Hey, the guy did go 13-3 … but yikes.

Thanks for reading.

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