Well the first game of the season didn’t go as planned tonight for our boys in blue. The St Louis Blues lost to the Nashville Predators 4-2 tonight. While the Blues out shot the Preds, the player that stood out was none other then Pekka Rinne. As outlined in my fantasy draft column, Rinne, is a top 3 goalie in the league and was a runner up last year for the Vezina. The Vezina is given to the most outstanding goalie in the league.
What I noticed tonight, (now it is the first game of the year you have to understand that) was some sloppy play in the defensive zone. It wasn’t just one player that was sloppy it was the entire defensive core. With Colaiacovo going down in the 2nd period, it meant that there were only 5 dressed defenseman the rest of the game. Nikitin, Shattenkirk, Pietrangelo, Polak, and Jackman were left. Out of those five I felt Polak and Jackman had the best game tonight defensively. Petro struggled a bit but overall was solid. Nikitin, and Shattenkirk gave up quite a few turnovers in their own end which hurt tonight. Not only were there mistakes in our own end, they had trouble holding the line tonight in the offensive zone. (Holding the Line- defensive positioning in the offensive zone/ keeping the puck from moving out of the offensive zone)
The forward lines tonight also had a fairly rough go of it tonight as well. It was to be expected as Rinne has the best glove hand in the NHL and tonight just kept track of the puck with pure excellence. The Oshie-Berglund-Stewart line set off the scoring tonight, with and absolute perfect feed from Oshie to Berglund. Arnott tallied his first goal as a blue as well tonight on the Power Play. The surprise line of the night to me was seeing Langenbrunner up with McDonald and Captain Backes. The line seemed to have pretty good chemistry just could not bury the puck tonight. Now admittedly I missed the first period tonight because of some cable issues here in Kansas City but I did make it down to my parents to watch the rest of the game. On the way down I quickly turned to a very fuzzy KMOX to listen to the remainder of the first period. What I did listen to was Ryan Reaves get the crowd fired up with a fight against Zach Stortini and demolish him with a haymaker. (I will post link as it is uploaded to the internet).
On to the Halak-ness monster. While he did let in a really soft goal for the Preds first goal of the night. You cannot entirely place all the blame on him tonight. The Blues D routinely failed to clear the crease for him tonight and did not do a good job moving their feet either. The first goal was knocked in as Halak could not find the loose puck just outside of his crease. The other two goals just happened to be well placed shots with Halak being in the right position. This is going to be a crucial year for Halak wearing the Note as Jake Allen will be pressing him next season.
All in all this game was disappointing because they lost, but it is still the first game out of eighty two games this year. Keeping up on my twitter feed it seems like everyone is freaking out all ready. Calm down my friends and followers 1 game will not break the season at this point. Game two is right around the corner against the Calgary Flames with an early 1p.m. start at the Scottrade on Monday. Links to Predlines and flamesforthought are here.
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