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Hitch calls for Blues to ‘simplify’ their game

Ken Hitchcock

St. Louis Blues head coach Ken Hitchcock yells from the bench during the third period of an NHL hockey game against the Dallas Stars, Saturday, Nov. 23, 2013, in St. Louis. The Blues won 6-1. (AP Photo/Jeff Roberson)


The coach who’s been accused of providing too much information for his players to digest believes his team made things too complicated in last night’s loss to the Minnesota Wild.

“You really have to simplify your game in the playoffs,” St. Louis Blues coach Ken Hitchcock said. “I thought when we didn’t get the shots through at the start, we started to play a very complicated game that made us at times look slow, and we were into the ‘make the next play’ rather than play it off the goalie and see what he’s got.”

We mostly mention this given what forward T.J. Oshie said a couple of weeks ago after a bad loss to Vancouver.

“I know we’re not (in the playoffs) yet, but there’s a lot of information going around, and guys are getting a little indecisive,” Oshie said. “I’m not sure what it looks like from up top, but I think guys aren’t really sticking with their gut and going with their first instinct.”

As Luke Thompson of FOX Sports Midwest wrote, Oshie’s comment was “as close to a direct repudiation of Hitchcock’s coaching philosophy as you’re likely to hear from his players.”

Granted, we could be looking at this too closely under the microscope. Then again, the St. Louis Blues are very much under the microscope in these playoffs, and they didn’t get off to a very good start last night.

Game 2 of the series goes tomorrow in St. Louis.