Nuggets:Blues vs Anaheim Ducks
How ’bout them Blues huh? First team to 100 points and to secure a playoff spot and have a 6 point lead on the Vancouver Canucks. If there were ever a time for bandwagon fans to jump on board, this would be it!
- The “red” line. Yesterday at practice the Blues dressed D’Agostini, Steen and McDonald in the red “no contact” jersey’s. Andy Strickland tweeted earlier on Tuesday that Steen wasn’t “ready to play”. Steen has been in California for the last month having two hyperbaric chamber sessions a day. He went to California with a clear set of goals which he reached, but for some reason something is holding him back. The good news is the Blues have secured their spot for Lord Stanley’s Cup so there really isn’t a reason to push him. McDonald and D’Agostini are very close to returning.
- The Blues look to close out the four game set by taking 3 of 4 with the only loss happening back on the first trip west in October. The thing to watch here is the Ducks don’t have anything to play for, playoffs wise. They sit last in their division with 73 points and their rivals are all trying to get every point they can to over take current leader Dallas at 85 points. This is one of those games where the other team is playing for next year and free agents who want to be signed somewhere will step up their game. The grinders hit a little more and a little harder. Defensemen sprawl out a little wider to block shots and forwards try a little harder to put the peanut butter on the top shelf next to dad’s magazines. This looks like a walk in the park on paper but the Ducks are big and like to hit too.
- Jaroslav Halak brings a 9-0-1 record into tonight’s game and has really stepped up his game lately. In this 10 game span he hasn’t allowed more than two goals in any of the wins. When Hitch announced that Halak was starting he wouldn’t go past tonight’s starter and was quoted as “we’ll see from there”. I wouldn’t read too deep into that. The Blues play back to back games and then head to Phoenix Sunday night to close out their last western trip. Before tonight’s game, both of those teams sit just one point behind Dallas for the division. According to the Conference standings, Dallas and Los Angeles are in with L.A. being the potential match up in the first round against the Blues. It’s very likely that the Blues will see one of these teams to start the chase for the cup.
- Patrik Berglund and David Perron are the hottest Blues to come into the game tonight. Bergie brings 4 G and 2 A in the last 6 games and Frenchie has 3 G and 3 A over that same span. On the other side, Bobby Ryan brings 4 G and 6 A and his line mate Ryan Getzlaf has 6 helpers over the last 10 games.
- The pic above is Jaden Schwartz sitting at his “locker”. Hitch’s response when asked about it ” He hasn’t played enough games where he can face anybody. I hope he’s good friends with the pillar.” I know I posted the pic on our facebook page yesterday, but I wanted to add Hitch’s comment,
I’ll be with you on this late night start at 9 pm. Bring your playoff questions and we’ll break them down for you over the next few weeks as the Blues continue their chase for the top spot in the league. As always you can find me on our Facebook page and @blueshockeynet on twitter.
LET”S GO BLUES!