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Nemeses: Blues At Chicago Blackhawks Preview

From TAOW to TFUN .... oh joy.

"Where have ya gone, Brian Elliott? Our nation turns its lonely eyes to you"
"Where have ya gone, Brian Elliott? Our nation turns its lonely eyes to you"
Bruce Fedyck-USA TODAY Sports

The second half of the double-whammy comes tonight, as #OurBlues travel to Chicago to face the Hawks. The last thing that the Blues can afford to do is try to play LA again. Though we have similar histories against these two teams, they are indeed two different entities, and cannot be battled the same way.

That's not to say that there aren't lessons to be learned from the LA debacle. It seems like there were some very good individual efforts last night, but I can't say that there were any team efforts that seemed worthwhile. That has a lot to do with the changing lines and lineups, but there's got to be a better way of coordinating the talents of our players. Nowhere is this more obvious than the power play, hardly worth the name. Since Carl Gunnarsson scored at the 18:53 mark of the 3rd period against Winnipeg on Oct 18th, the Blues have gone 0-for-21. That dam has to break sometime, right? RIGHT?

Being a brilliant man
Going to great expense
Devising a master plan
Doesn't make much sense
Unless you find the one you're destined to destroy
Now that you're here I don't seem that crazy do I?

Another lesson that is hardly new: Stay out of the box. The Chicago Blackhawks are currently scoring on 19.5% of their power play opportunities. This is a slightly better clip than the Kings. If the Blues allow the Hawks 5 power play chances (like last night), we're essentially spotting them a 1-goal lead. As much as the Andrew Shaws and Ryan Garbutts of the world agitate and stir up shit, the Blues will need to stay focused on the gameplan. Discipline will be key.

Could it be that you need me
To keep you out, to run you faster
Promise me you'll let me be
The one, the worst of all your enemies
Pretending you're a friend to me
Say that we'll be nemeses

And another thing - where are these yips coming from? Several Grade A scoring opportunities were being sent wide and/or high without any help from the LA defenders. While the Chicago defense without Duncan Keith isn't as solid as the current LA blueline, we surely needn't help them out by sending our shots off-target. Make the goalie at least earn those saves. The Blues won't be able to wear their helmets backwards and double-knot their left skates.

Further Reading:

Second City Hockey

Committed Indian

Gameday Twitter Feed:

Final Verse: The Blues are back on national TV, playing in the weekly Rivalry Night broadcast. The puck drops at 7:00 PM St Louis time, and the GDT should drop shortly beforehand. The TV broadcast is on NBC Sports Network, and the radio call will be on KMOX 1120AM. Come one, come all. Bring beer.