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Elliott dignity, Tarasenko greatness and a winning streak

After a stretch of bad play, the Blues have played better hockey and won three in a row.

Guess who's back, back again!
Guess who's back, back again!
Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports

Wouldn't it be great and St. Louis Blues fans could label the month long stretch of average to bad hockey a "Magnus Paajarvi" problem? It doesn't make a bit of sense but that doesn't mean it slides off the tongue horribly.

In the immortal words of Lou Brown, the Blues are on a winning streak. You know, where the scoreboard doesn't say you suck for more than two games. The Blues are only six points back(with two games the next week) of the Dallas Stars. In beating the Winnipeg Jets, Nashville Predators and Calgary Flames, the Blues gained some dignity and swagger back.

There's a law somewhere that says you can't lose to a team with jerseys as ugly as the Preds wore on Thursday. There's also a law that says when ex-teammates(Jax) get cool tribute videos, you better send him home with a loss. The Blues did all of that and more this past week.

After losing five of their first seven games to start December, the Blues have roared(ha!) back. The highlight is two wins in a row at home. The first time since Halloween where the Note have collected back to back victories at Scottrade. Every time the Blues win, fans don't have to worry about the Ken Hitchcock excuse reel playing afterwards. It's all just noise.

Sure, the five guys on the ice still like to mentally skate to the side and force their goaltender to be awesome(Brian Elliott for the last two periods Saturday afternoon) for a stretch, but a fast start always derails an average overall performance.

Look at the bright side of things.

Elliott collected his first win since October 18th on Saturday, stopping 36 shots and literally saving the Blues ass when a comeback loss would have gut the arena. This man may not be #1 flavor anymore(more like the purple pack of skittles) but he needs more game time. Unfortunately, fans most likely won't see him until the new year. He probably only played Saturday because he owns the Flames.

In his latest display of "I am a lot better than you at hockey", Vladimir Tarasenko tallied three points(including goal #21 which temporarily put him ahead of Jamie Benn) in Saturday's victory. The 24 year old phenom is second in the NHL in goals, 4th in points, 5th in power play goals and 7th in shots. He has 11 games this season with two points or more. The kid either fires a wrist shot into the net, slams home leftovers or freaks the goalie out so much Alex Steen scores instead. Since Paul Stastny's return, Tarasenko has scored 8 goals and tallied 14 points while netting a goal in five straight games.

Colton Parayko may look like a power forward but he is actually a fine defenseman and can pinch in across the net and flip a backhand shot into the net like he has baby jesus hands or something. The man has action, boss.

Stop saying Paul Stastny isn't good. He's a catalyst and an absolute beast in the faceoff battle. He makes other players better. This is the same group that wants to trade David Backes and Alex Pietrangelo but can't appreciate Alex Steen enough. As a wise man once said, a good player plays where the puck is. A great player plays where the puck is going to be. Stastny plays where the puck is going to be. That wise man was Wayne Gretzky.

What does all of this mean? The Blues have a winning streak and will go for their second(October 13-18)four game winning streak on tomorrow in Philadelphia before visiting Boston on the last game before the Christmas break.

The honest truth is the Blues played a fantastic month and half of hockey to start the season. Somewhere in November, things started getting loose and the play went south. The upturn in results this past week doesn't make it all right, but it sure does feel better having the second most points in the Western Conference as 2015 draws closer to its finale.

Lessons I learned this week. The Tarasenko-Stastny-Steen line is beautiful. Steve Ott doesn't like medical professionals commenting on his hamstrings. Some people are still dumb enough to fight Ryan Reaves. Elliott occasionally takes off his baseball cap. Pekka Rinne isn't as good as he used to be.

Just remember Blues fans. Winning streaks are nice. They represent consistency. Enjoy them while they last.