It's not often that you see a backup goaltender get back to back starts on back to back nights, and it's even more rare to see that backup post back to back wins, but that's exactly what Brian Elliott managed last night against the Philadelphia Flyers. The Blues were able to spring out to a 2-0 lead in the first period and never relinquished the lead despite some serious pressure by the Flyers. Philly isn't used to another team in the Eastern Conference being able to stand up to their physicality; however, the Blues are built for big, physical play. Unfortunately that physicality from both sides cost the Blues a very important player.
Kent Huskins began the scoring less than two minutes into the game with a booming slapshot from the point that went in between Ilya Byrzgalov's pads. TJ Oshie scored his first of the season at 10:04 of the first catching a rebound from a Carlo Colaiacovo shot. Oshie, unfortunately for him, was benched the entirety of the second period as a message from Coach Davis Payne. What was that message? Pay attention, clean up you play, and don't make turnovers that could potentially cost your team. Back to back blunders in a matter of seconds - a failure to get the puck into the offensive zone and a blue line turnover - made Payne put down his foot. Oshie returned the third period, message apparently received.
Unfortunately for the Blues, they allowed a powerplay goal. which isn't helping much in getting the penalty kill out of the league's basement. On the upswing, Matt D'Agostini netted a goal on the powerplay, which is the Blues first PP goal since opening night, snapping a 0-for-21 streak.
Speaking of snaps, David Backes took this shoulder on shoulder hit from Chris Pronger, causing him to hit his head on the ice. He's listed now as day to day with an upper body injury, and he'll be re-evaluated on Monday.
Another hit of note, mostly for comedic effect, was this one by Matthew Read on Matt D'Agostini, who was on his way onto the ice:
Brian Elliott was outstanding again, stopping 34 of 36 Philly shots. Jaroslav Halak, for the second game in a row, watched as his backup goalie did exactly what he was supposed to do: provide motivation. I'd consider Elliott outstanding at his job.