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Well, they did it again. Somehow, the Blues scraped a win and managed to keep those playoff hopes alive. Barely. Basically, the state of play is that the Blues need to win their remaining three games against Chicago, Anaheim and Nashville. However, Colorado have four games remaining – and should they win ONE of those games in regulation, the Blues are out of the playoffs. Colorado play Vancouver tonight.
There was no tv coverage of the game – due to the NHL’s television agreement – and those of us listening on the radio were very glad there WASN’T coverage of the first period. The Blues were, quite frankly, awful. The Blues went behind early – TJ Oshie was called for goaltender interference after 1.38 and the Blue Jackets scored on the subsequent powerplay. The Blue Jackets were without Rick Nash, Jan Hedja, Kris Russell, Jared Boll and Chris Clark yet the Blues could not seem to generate any offense. The Blues were outshot 11-4 in the first period, despite having two powerplays – the Blue Jackets had three powerplays.
Davis Payne obviously had words during intermission because the Blues were much better in the second period. They outshot the Blue Jackets 16-8, had two powerplays and managed to tie the game. David Perron set up Andy McDonald on a three on one break. It was McDonald’s 23rd of the season.
The third period was more even – the shots were 9-6 in favour of the Blues but neither team could break through. It ended up in overtime – and Erik Johnson scored a powerplay goal after Methot was penalised for holding. The Blues picked up the two points – but they came at a price. Keith Tkachuk left the game early with a lower body injury and Patrik Berglund also left the game with an upper body injury. On the upside, Tkachuk has travelled with the team to Chicago, unfortunately Patrik Berglund has not.
Anyway – your game reports:
- The Blues Official Site has the recap and you can watch the two Blues goals. There are also interviews with Davis Payne, Andy McDonald and Erik Johnson.
- St Louis Game Time point out that the Blues are “mathematically alive”.
- Dan O’Neill of the Post Dispatch notes that the Blues needed overtime to beat the Blue Jackets – with comments from Erik Johnson and Chris Mason.
Let’s be honest – the playoffs are looking very unlikely. However – to point out some good things…the Blues have now won 5 straight home games improving their home record to 17-18-5; Erik Johnson’s 10 goals this season makes him the first Blues defenseman to reach double figures since Chris Pronger in 2003/2004; the Blues have the number one penalty kill in the league and have also had 32 home sellouts.
The offseason is going to be interesting. Very interesting.