Good morning Blues fans! Another day, another Blues win? That’s the way it has gone the last few days, but who knows how long it will last.
The St. Louis Blues did not do things too conventionally yesterday against the Anaheim Ducks. They got the win though and that is most important at this stage of the season.
As usual, from a fan’s perspective, there were holes in the silver lining. The team won, sure, but the defensive lapses were still there now and then.
What are we to make of it though? On one hand you could argue that Anaheim deserved more than they got.
They played hard and thought they had a point wrapped up when they tied things up in the third period. St. Louis got a rare goal from Ryan Reaves, which almost never happens, so can you really say the Blues were the clear cut winner?
On the other hand the Ducks’ first goal was goaltender interference. The officials can say Jori Lehtera pushed the guy in, but he had ever opportunity to remove his stick from Jake Allen’s gut and it never happened. It’s a rather unsatisfying gray area that is almost impossible to clean up.
The second goal was the defense falling asleep. Chris Wagner brought it in, dished it to the right hand side and then somehow cut through two defenders to be in alone for the tap in. That stuff should not happen. Someone needs to keep a body on him and not from behind.
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Even the third goal could possibly have been prevented. Robert Bortuzzo got caught puck watching a little bit and followed it down toward the endline, which allowed Jakob Silfberberg to get to the slot unopposed. The play itself was a good bit of passing skill, so Bortuzzo gets a little bit of a pass, but still there is that lingering feeling.
But, with each team being the beneficiary of some luck perhaps it all washes out. The Blues won and though we love to pick on the minute details as things we wish had not happened or gone differently, as long as the team wins then it comes out in the cleaners.
Sure, the Blues need to be more on point. They have to be at the top of their game if they hope to escape a vicious first round that will likely either pit them against Minnesota or Chicago. At this stage of the regular season, you need points even if you have to do some old school WWF heel stuff to get them – eye gouges, steel chairs, that sort of thing.
In seriousness, it was nice to see the team keep their spirit about them. In the past we’ve seen the Blues knock off good teams like Minnesota, think the game is easy and look foolish the next time.
Vladimir Tarasnenko kept his roll going as I hoped he would. It is this time of year that he needs to be hitting his stride.
It’s disappointing that he is unlikely to eclipse his goal totals from last season. If he can get hot for the playoffs though, it will be fine.
On a slightly personal note, it is satisfying that the team seems to do well almost every time I call them out in my articles. That said, I can’t do it every time since that would overuse the mojo.
Now it’s on to the New York Islanders. Who knows what to make of this team. They made the playoffs last year but were just OK. This season they have been as low as bottom of the conference only to be one of the current wild card teams.
The Blues will have to be on their toes and have not fared well in the second of back-to-backs this season. It’s a perfect time to keep things going on the positive and pick up another home win.
Here are your St. Louis Blues Morning Links to get your day started off right.
The St. Louis Blues found out about their two fans that helped a family escape from a burning building. In typical heroic fashion, they were very humble and put praise on others even as the team honored them for their life-saving efforts. (Fox2)
As mentioned above, the Blues got the win despite some unconventional methods. Joel Edmundson got the game winner, of all people, and the team used one of the most unorthodox lines we may ever see (and hope not to see again if we can help it). (Bleedin’ Blue)
A familiar face will be at the helm of the New York Islanders as they visit the Blues tonight. Doug Weight makes his first return to St. Louis as a head coach as he pulled a Mike Yeo by replacing the Islanders coach midseason. (St. Louis Gametime)
The Chicago Wolves are embarking on the home stretch of their regular season. They wrap up their regular season series with rival Milwaukee. They’ve done well but need to keep winning, like the Blues, to make sure they get a good spot. (Wolves)
At this stage of the season, any injury can be a killer for any team. The New York Rangers may have gotten the worst news possible just short of a season ending injury as their All-Star goaltender will be out almost a month. (ESPN)
In a more uplifting story, the NHL unveiled a new statue at the Hall of Fame. As one of the men who brought so many people into the arenas during his playing days, it is no coincidence that Gordie Howe’s likeness will now welcome people to the Hockey Hall of Fame. (NHL)
Have a great day Blues fans!