At this point of the season, all NHL teams and their fans are hoping for the same thing – a guaranteed place in the playoffs. This is the time that we ask ourselves, is our favorite NHL teams playoff bound?
Like all of you die-hard St. Louis Blues fans, I ask myself if we have what it takes to continue with our current five game winning streak to increase our position within the NHL Western Conference.
All NHL teams are currently dealing with a variety of injuries at this point of the season. The St. Louis Blues are no different, as we currently have four injured/sick players that will hopefully recover in time to play with the rest of the team this month and in the 2013 Playoffs. However, with a limited amount of game time left in the regular season, Coach Ken Hitchcock is attempting to refine the multiple lines, while welcoming the new additions to the team and providing the necessary support and motivation to the team to give their very best when out on the ice.
With the addition of two Defensemen, Jordan Leopold, Jay Bouwmeester and one right winger Dmitrij Jaskin, we look forward to learning about Hitchcock’s vision for each of them. So far, we have noticed that Leopold and Bouwmeester have been matched up with fellow Defensemen, Alex Pietrangelo and Kevin Shattenkirk. However, I am curious to see if Hitchcock plans staying with the status quo or if he plans on changing things up a bit and going another direction.
On April 7th, Forward, Andy McDonald, was out due to flu-like symptoms, so Defenseman, Kris Russell, functioned as a suitable substitute. Throughout the game, Russell proved that he is a strong and versatile player who is willing to step up to the plate when needed and is accepting of change.
With Goaltender, Jaroslav Halak, out due to a groin injury, Brian Elliott has impressed fans, management and opponents by acting as a consistently solid defense wall by thwarting all attempts made by the Detroit Redwings and the Nashville Predators with two back to back shut-outs. We also have a superb back up goaltender, Jake Allen, who has done an amazing job at covering the goal and inspiring the team play like they did at the beginning of the season.
With our goaltenders proving that they are rockstars out on the ice, as well as the rest of the team
I truly believe that the “spark” that everyone witnessed at the beginning of the season is back and should undoubtedly provide for a thrilling few weeks leading up to the playoffs.