Blues Have Strong Start to Short Season
Many questioned whether the defending Central Division Champions would have the same tenacity on the ice as they did last season, and if the last four games are any indication, I’d say yes.
In their home opener, they faced their mighty rivals, the Detroit Red Wings, and gave them a beating that no amount of lucky octopi could prevent. The Blues controlled the entire game, allowing Detroit only 14 shots on goal, and plopping six big ones in the back of the net, themselves. Tarasenko, the hyped-up Russian phenom, tallied two goals and an assist in his first ever NHL game. That boy can play. In the Halak got an easy shutout with a 6-0 victory.
Two nights later, the Note headed to Nashville. It was a back and forth game with the score 2-2 at the end of the first. A goal I the 2nd by Patric Hornqvist put the Preds up by 1, and a beauty from Alex Pietrangelo tied it back up with 8 minutes to go. Oshie and Steen sealed the victory in the shootout.
The next night, they traveled up to the Windy City. Both Chicago and St. Louis were 2-0 at this point, so someone had to give. The Blues faced more opposition in this game, allowing a 3 on 0 scenario (which led to a goal) letting the Hawks get an early lead. The score was 3-0 before they cleaned up their game in the 3rd period. With two minutes to go, Coach Ken Hitchcock pulled Brian Elliott. The Blues piled on the pressure with the man advantage, but Hawk’s goalie, Corey Crawford, was playing his guts out. In the end, the Blues lost 2-3.
After a night off to recuperate, they headed back down to Nashville. Learning from their mistakes at Chicago, the Blues took a little of that leftover spark from the Detroit game, and let it loose. The Preds were dominated for most of the game, allowing Halak to make all 13 saves (some beauties, by the way), giving him another shut-out with a 3-0 victory.
Minus the first half of the Blackhawks game, the Blues have been phenomenal. Both goalies look good, the defense is tight, and the offense is producing. Just take a look at these numbers: