One of the things that I've learned through the years, in Life as in all things Hockey, is the importance of keeping everything zen. That is, neither getting too high with wins nor getting too low with losses. Getting shutout was particularly annoying, but we can't worry too much about that Boston loss. Sure, it's a tough comedown to lose to a depleted team. However, if you look back too much, you lose sight of what's ahead -
As much as the press loved the Blues and the Tarasenko/ STL Line stories, the team that has really captured the media's attention is Les Habitants. They have battled their way to a 14-5-1 record and first place in the Atlantic Division, the Eastern Conference, and really ... the whole damn league. Tell me if this sounds familiar: a hot team that was building up a considerable winning streak had it end Tuesday by losing in a shutout to a perennial East contender. That would be the Habs - running off 6 wins in a row before losing Tuesday to the Penguins 4-0. They are looking to bounce back, too, and cut off the losses at just one - but both teams can't have it that way. Something has to give. The Blues have played some good road hockey earlier this season, so I believe that they can recapture that. This will be a tough outing, no doubt about it. If they can get back to doing the little things right, the Blues can handle any team, even the Habs.
There are several scorers on the Montreal team, as most good teams would have, but the ones at the top of the list would be Max Pacioretty (16 pts) and Tomas Plekanec (15 pts). Also, watch for former Blues Lars Eller and Mike Weaver. Weaver has been day-to-day with an upper-body injury. Also, of course, the main feature for the Habs would be their star defenseman P.K. Subban.
While it's not official yet, we're expecting Carey Price to start in the Montreal net. His year so far: 11-4-1 with 2.58 GAA and a .914 save percentage. The Blues will be starting Jake Allen in net tonight. The only other change is that Magnus Paajarvi should get back into the line up. That'll mean that someone sits, but no word who just yet. Stay tuned.
The Blues have won the last 5 times we've faced the Canadiens ... let's make it six, eh?
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Final Verse: The Belle Province is still in Eastern Time, so another early start. The puck drops at 6:30 PM St Louis time, and the GDT should drop shortly beforehand. The TV Broadcast is on Fox Sports MW, and the radio call will be on KMOX 1120 AM. In the meantime, brush up on your French and be ready to go tonight.