The St. Louis Blues continue to live up to expectations as the season hits the home stretch. Unfortunately, the expectations are about as low as they can be right now.
The St. Louis Blues keep finding new ways to disappoint us. Another poor performance against Winnipeg has even the most positive among us actually wondering if this team deserves to make the playoffs.
The Blues came out with a decent amount of jump and created a few scoring chances. However, they simply cannot find ways to consistently beat goaltenders.
We have to give credit to each individual goalie for having good games, but at some point you have to say it’s the offense. The Blues have issues front to back, but it’s literally impossible to win if you do not score goals.
Beyond that, the Blues continue to give up on their teammates. After Jake Allen gave up an admittedly soft goal, the team just gave up.
There was no fight. There was no push back. They just started going out there and going through the motions.
The Blues showed a few glimpses on a shift here or there. However, it just is not happening. At this point, there is nothing more to say that has not been said.
We can go full tomato face or we can say we’re giving up on the team. As individual fans, we have to do whatever suits us best, but it isn’t going to change anything.
For a team that is still in the playoff hunt, this team is about as disappointing as any in recent history. We keep trying to cling to the hope that LA backed in a few years ago and won, but the way the Blues are playing, a first round exit or not even making the playoffs seems to be their destiny.
Jake Allen had a bad game.
I’ll just get this one out of the way since so many out there think Allen is the problem. The funny thing is I saw a fantastic Facebook post a game ago.
Basically it said fan reaction is blame Allen when he’s in but blame the team when Carter Hutton is in. That’s about as spot on as it gets.
Regardless of that, Allen did not play well and he will tell you so. He made some big saves that kept the score semi-respectable, but he was to blame for the second goal.
I still maintain things could have gone differently beforehand and the team could have defended the play better. However, it cannot be denied that Allen blew it on the shot.
The issue becomes this team gives up when Allen struggles. They can say whatever they want in the media, but maybe they truly don’t believe in the Snake this year.
Allen can be one of the league’s better goalies when he is right. Sadly, he might not be able to right his ship until the offseason the way he’s going. He’s just a headcase right now.
The Blues came out hard.
One of St. Louis’ biggest issues over the last month or two has been getting off to slow starts. That was not the case, at least for the first seven minutes or so in this game.
They created quite a few looks on goal, but they just could not beat Connor Hellebuyck. That has become a theme. For whatever reason, the Blues seem to make the goaltenders they face look like all-world players.
St. Louis has to keep finding ways to keep up this energy throughout a game. If they can keep plugging, you have to figure goals will come eventually.
That is not trying to look at the glass half full. That is reality. We are not talking about scoring five goals per game, but the goals have to come eventually if the Blues keep up the energy from the start.
Turnovers and penalties continue to be killers.
The Blues were statistically credited with seven giveaways. When you have that many turnovers actually written in the score book, you know they had at least 10 or more turnovers, since the stats are picky about what they actually classify as a giveaway.
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A turnover led to the first goal of the game. A turnover almost led to a goal later in the first period where Allen actually made a big save.
The Blues should have had good puck control. They won the vast majority of the faceoffs. However, they continue to have every mistake be made to pay for.
On top of that, the penalties are getting out of hand. It’s just a lack of effort or smart thinking right now. One of the slashing penalties, there was literally no way the Blues’ stick was not going to hit one of the Jets on the hands. Why even bother then?
The Blues only allowed one power play goal, but when you cannot score, one is more than you can afford. The fact the Blues gave the Jets five chances to score with a man advantage is bad enough.
Even if you manage to kill them all off, that is at least 10 minutes you are shorthanded. You are sapping what little energy they still have at this point in the season by defending.
The Blues have to find a way to keep composed and be smart. Allowing teams with high powered offenses to continually be on the power play or handing them odd-man rushes with careless turnovers will never allow you to focus on your own offense.
The team gave up, yet again.
I try my best to even out the pros and the cons, but really what else was there other than a decent start? As mentioned, there were a few good shifts or pushes throughout the game, but not enough.
The Blues continue to put their head down and sulk whenever something bad happens. We can blame Allen, and he does shoulder responsibility, but good teams push back.
When was the last time St. Louis fought back? It has not been in over three months.
St. Louis managed to come back from deficits in six of their first 31 games. They have not managed to come from behind the last 14 times they have not scored the opening goal.
You always strive to score first, but this team used to pride itself on never giving up. Now, as soon as something doesn’t go their way it’s all over.
That is not the hallmark of a good team. You should strive to pick your teammates, not give them the side-eye and scoff at them. It is hard to overcome human nature to say here we go again, but that’s what good players and good teams do. Clearly this team and these players are not good right now.
Did we really expect anything else?
We all get our hopes up and think maybe this will be the game to turn things around. However, when we really look into our true feelings, did we really expect a different outcome.
We might expect a better outcome, in terms of a final score. Personally, I predicted a 3-2 loss in overtime. Still, I expected the loss.
What more should we expect right now? I don’t expect this team to lose 25 games in a row and never win again. However, what have they really shown us to make us believe this is not the trend they’ll stay on to end the season?
They don’t support either goaltender right now, even if they do slightly play better for Hutton. They can’t score, so even if you get a shutout, you’re still going to overtime. They don’t defend as a unit and some guys are defending like they haven’t played the position in their life.
When everything seems to be wrong, how should we expect it to suddenly go right?
The sky might not be falling, but it’s about as cloudy as it can get at the moment. Winnipeg deserves a lot of credit for kicking our butts. However, I’m not even sure they should feel great about the win since we played so lackluster.