Good morning Blues fans! The boys have a rare off day between games and while it may come at an inopportune time, nobody in blue is complaining much.
The St. Louis Blues get an extra off day today before embarking on the storm that will surely come forth in Game 4. For those wondering why, it is because Lionel Richie’s concert was scheduled at Scottrade Center long before the playoffs.
So, the Blues get to rest all night long. Then tomorrow, hopefully they will be dancing on the ceiling.
If anyone knows what I just did there, kudos to you. The Blues had it easy yesterday too, easy like Sunday morning even though it was Monday.
Ok, enough of the song references. The truth is the Blues are in an incredibly enviable spot and yet people still don’t feel comfortable.
It is understandable to a point. There are no guarantees to a sweep since the Blues only arrived in the series in Game 3 really.
One bad game from Jake Allen and things could turn on their ear. Really it doesn’t even take a bad game. An average one would do the way Minnesota has pelted the net.
While St. Louis did a much better job in Game 3, forcing most shots outside to the walls, they have still allowed 117 pucks on net. That’s an average of 39 shots per game.
Clearly the Blues can withstand that pressure. However, it puts more pressure on the team to end the series in four.
St. Louis is using a lot of energy on defense. That’s fine in and of itself, but the longer you go, the less you have later.
That was the biggest issue last season. The Blues’ inability to finish off Chicago and Dallas when they had the chance, left no gas in the tank for San Jose.
There is no reason for gloom and doom though. The Blues seem to be squarely planted in the minds of the Wild.
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Even if they lose Game 4, it seems unlikely the Wild would have enough left mentally to finish off four straight wins. Stranger things have happened though.
So, the Blues need to utilize this rest period. An extra day to revitalize legs and get some health back never hurts.
On top of that, credit must go where credit is due. Pierre McGuire – everybody’s favorite cueball – said that the extra day actually favors the Blues. His reasoning is not too far fetched.
The Blues have taken control of the series and done everything right, even when they’ve done wrong. So, they don’t have to spend any of their time fixing things. You sharpen and hone what you have already done and focus on one game alone.
For Minnesota, they have to worry about how to change their scoring. A team that led the league in 5-on-5 scoring has been shut down for all intensive purposes. They need to worry about lines, tweaking attack options and plays and an entire laundry list of things.
The Wild can say they will take it one game at a time, but it is easy to look ahead and think how do you duplicate a performance if you win. The Blues only need to win one more.
Those are dangerous games though, knowing you have a cushion. For now, let’s all just be happy the team is even in this position and hope they get the job done tomorrow.
Here are your St. Louis Blues Morning Links to get your day started off right.
The Blues and Wild took differing approaches to the extra day. St. Louis took Monday off with a chance to practice today, while the Wild went all the way back to Minnesota. St. Louis is just rolling with the tide at this point. (STLToday)
Ryan Reaves has reinvented himself quite a bit for this season. Still, physicality is what he is on the ice for and he has provided lots of it. Check out a gallery of some of his best hits. (Post-Dispatch)
Pavel Datsyuk may have left the United States, but like Jaromir Jagr, he seems to be ageless. At 38, he just won some more hardware, this time in Russia. (ESPN)
The Minnesota Wild are a tough team to beat. They have a decent record in elimination games, but that stat might be padded just a bit. (Gone Puck Wild)
What was originally thought to be just a facial gash turned out to be much more for the Blue Jackets’ Zach Werenski. It will also keep him out of action much longer too. (Puck Prose)
Have a great day Blues fans!