St. Louis Blues Pros/Cons From 2023-24 Game 2 Vs Seattle

St. Louis Blues goaltender Jordan Binnington (50)Mandatory Credit: Jeff Le-USA TODAY Sports
St. Louis Blues goaltender Jordan Binnington (50)Mandatory Credit: Jeff Le-USA TODAY Sports /

If the entire 2023-24 season is anything like the first two games, the St. Louis Blues are going to put us through a lot of stress. Two games in, they’ve already gone to overtime twice and pulled off dueling results.

After starting the year with a loss against the Dallas Stars, St. Louis came home looking to started with a win on home ice. The Seattle Kraken stood in their way.

The first period was not terrible, but definitely not great. They lost Pavel Buchnevich to an upper-body injury, failed to get many shots on goal and seemed like they had surrendered the opening goal of the game.

A shot from Vince Dunn found the back of the net, but something seemed off. For the second night in a row, the Blues challenged an opponent’s goal and actually won.

The stick of the Kraken in front got tangled with Jordan Binnington’s goaltender paddle and turned him around and dislodged his goal stick. The review took a little long than it should have, but they got it right and disallowed the goal.

Unfortunately, that relief was short lived. The Blues took a late first-period penalty and the Kraken scored 40 seconds into the second period on the power play. Jaden Schwartz set up on the back side and got a great deflection for the 1-0 lead.

The Blues did not hang their heads and got back to work. They would tie things up with less than eight minutes played.

Jordan Kyrou started his season off well, snapping a goal from the high slot. It was his first of the season and was a decent way to quiet the detractors after he made a meal of his shootout in Dallas.

That would actually be the end of the scoring for both teams. The hits were there and both teams played a relatively physical style, but they couldn’t crack the goaltenders down the stretch.

In overtime, the Blues relied heavily on Binnington for the second night. Binnington made a game-saving stop with less than 30 seconds left in overtime and preserving the ability to pull off a win.

However, we should not expect a win when the Blues go to a shootout. It was just as nervy, but St. Louis manage o pull a win and stand tall at the end.

Brayden Schenn got stoned on the first shot, as did Kyrou on the second attempt. Robert Thomas roofed a backhander in from close quarters.

Binnington stopped all three Kraken shooters. The 1-0 line in the shootout gained the Blues a 2-1 win.

Pros: Binnington

For the second night in a row, the Blues goaltender was their best player. It was more clear in this game than the Dallas game, but there is no doubt that Binnington is the backbone of the team right now.

He was forced to make several first-period saves to keep the team in it. If you watch the highlight package on the team’s website, the first period was basically nothing but Binngington saves.

He made the big save at the end of overtime to even give the Blues a shot. He turned away all three Kraken players in the shootout too.

St. Louis needed a win and their goaltender handed it to them.

Cons: Losing Buchnevich

Given the contact nature of the NHL and every team being willing to rough up known injured players, it’s no wonder the upper-body/lower-body injury thing exists.

Nevertheless it is frustrating to not even have the faintest idea what is wrong with someone. That is what we have with Buchnevich right now.

He was injured in the first period when he was shoved awkwardly into the boards. Given his reaction to head off quickly and some sleuth work done by social media, many think it could be a hand or wrist issue.

Craig Berube did not allay any fears by saying he doesn’t know the significance of it, but also stating “It’s unfortunate.” I have a feeling this will be long term, but hopefully I’m wrong.

Pros: Defensive turnaround

Things are still not picture perfect for the Blues defense, but it’s a marked improvement on an awful 2022-23 campaign. They look much more like they should.

The shots are still being taken and the Blues are still guilty of puck watching. They’re not quite as strong positionally as you would like, in terms of boxing people out.

That said, they are in good spots overall. They already had 10 blocked chances very early in the contest and ended the game with 17 official blocks.

They’re more active with sticks in the lanes too. Yes, they still allow chances against them, but we haven’t seen the back-door play just left wide open like it was all of last season.

Cons: Overtime

If St. Louis is going to play this many close games – yes, it’s a small sample size – they need to learn how to play in overtime. Whatever they’re doing right now is not going to cut it.

Against both Dallas and Seattle, the Blues have barely possessed the puck in overtime. I don’t even feel their game plan is to sit back and defend, but they lack the belief they can actively challenge their opponents.

In both games, the Blues just allowed wave after wave of opposing player to march right over the blue line. It does tie in the the positive of the defense that they didn’t allow that killer chance against, but they need to generate some offense.

Relying too much on your goalie is going to burn out Binnington. Also, despite the win on this night, the Blues are historically not good at shootout. I’d like to see a little more urgency in overtime to not allow the crap shoot that is a shootout.


A win is a win and a loss is a loss. We shouldn’t feel too bad about the loss against Dallas, nor should we be overly pleased with this win over Seattle.

The Blues had a decent amount of shots by the time the game ended, but four shots on goal in the first period is not going to cut it. I don’t want to hear about quality over quantity or the team not getting their legs under them or whatever excuse there might be. Put the puck on net.

Additionally, scoring chances were just not readily available. The offense did not look bad, but they’re not sharp right now. It’s only two games in, but there’s some slightly worrying patterns.

That said, Binnington earned all the points in this one too. He bailed the team out when he needed and could easily have had a shutout if not for a well placed shot and deflection by the Kraken power play.

On the positive side, the Blues are getting points even though they have yet to show their best. They’re giving good effort and showing energy, but the execution is far from being on point.

If you can gain points in those moments, your season could/should go reasonably well because you should have the talent kick in at some point. Time will tell for that.

For now, the focus shifts to the injury. I hope it is short lived, but worry it’s a long-term one.

2023-24 a true unknown for Blues. dark. Next

It’s too early in the year to lose a top winger, but this is the sport. The Blues should know more soon, so for now we can just enjoy the win since the Blues don’t play again until Thursday the 19th.