Fifty-four seconds into the first period, Marian Hossa scored his second goal of the game, sealing the deal and killing any momentum that the Blues could have tried to regain. They never regained the punch from the first period, left out any of the frustration they felt in the second, and just played through sludge in the third. Perhaps it was the fact that they played last night and are tired and jet-lagged, but whatever the reason they should not have played as poorly as they did tonight.
The Blues’ power play was, as always, terrible, going 0-for-4. It’s even more frustrating when you take into consideration the fact that the Blackhawks have the league’s worst penalty kill. Ray Emery gave the Blues many good scoring chances, on the power play and off, but in an effort to score high on him the shots went too high and wide.
The Blues were outshot 35-25, and Brian Elliott’s four goals allowed is the first time this season he’s given up more than two. Just the second loss in Ken Hitchcock’s tenure isn’t cause for worry, though with what was riding on the line tonight, it is disappointing. A win and St. Louis could have taken tops in the Central. As it stands, it’ll be a battle for second place Tuesday night against the Detroit Red Wings. The Blues’ll benefit from a few days rest, but whatever they do they cannot play as sluggishly as they did tonight – and they have to stop putting themselves in positions where penalties can be called. Six minors are six too many.