Tonight isn't the same Blackhawks team that the Blues have had fits against all season. Tonight's will be half AHL/half NHL players who are saving themselves for the start of the playoffs this week. They've won the President's Trophy. They don't care - what in the world do they really need to try for?
Now the Blues, they'll be playing for home ice in the first round, which would be nice. Is it necessary? No, but I'd still rather have home advantage while fighting with the Kings or Sharks. It worked well against San Jose, didn't it? The Kings last season, no, but this year they look a little more tired than they did last year.
The Blues aren't backing into the playoffs this year, Jaroslav Halak looks good to go, and T.J. Oshie should be back by game one of the first round. There's a lot to feel good about, so why not end the regular season on a win and get started on the right foot in the first round?
In what is no surprise, Brian Elliott is back between the pipes for the Blues tonight. He holds the NHL record for wins in April with 10, and his last game against the Blackhawks, a 2-0 loss, is his only loss on Scottrade ice this season.
If the Blues can focus tonight and play smart instead of frustrated hockey, they'll win. Play smart. Please play smart.