Four wins in a row for the Blues, who have apparently come prepared to play every game, and come prepared to show the opposition that they are once again a team to contend with. Who cares if they other team’s not in their conference? St. Louis still plays them as rough and as defensively tight as any other team. The Rangers, especially Marian Gaborik and Brad Richards, were dumbfounded how to get around the Blues’ defense, and could not hold up to the hard hits dealt out by David Backes and T.J. Oshie, amongst others.
The Blues, who outshot the Rangers 36-26, scored their insurance goal just one minute and one second into the third period. The goal was credited to Alex Steen, but, well… take a look:
Lundqvist obviously had no clue where the puck was, but in all fairness, neither did anyone else until it was in the back of the net. Steen might want to send Dan Girardi a thank you note – both for the assist and for not fully closing his hand on the puck.
The Blues iced it with an empty-netter than was finally scored by Jason Arnott, despite some major effort from Jamie Langenbrunner at the mouth of the net:
With tonight’s win, the Blues improve to 18-9-3 on the year, and goaltender Brian Elliott gets his 13th win of the season complete with a .962 save percentage to help him maintain the league lead.
Also helpful tonight were Saturday’s opponent, the Nashville Predators. The Preds scored two goals in the third period to take out the Detroit Red Wings, which helps the Blues into a tie for second place in the Central Division and fourth place in the Western Conference.
Remember pre-lockout, hard hitting, winning Blues hockey? It’s back.