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Top Five Biggest Gripes From The Blues' Game One Loss

Catharsis usually breeds more irritation, but whatever. Here goes.

Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports

I know that the Blues aren't out of the playoffs. I remember the last time that they lost a game one in the first round - Barret Jackman took out Jaroslav Halak and the fanbase collectively threw in the towels. The Blues won the next four against the Sharks.

So yes, I know it's not over. But good GOD last night's game was terrible, uninspired hockey.

1. Read more Game Time, Hitch.

Hitchcock really needed to read Robb's post about shooting the damn puck. The Blues attempted over fifty shots on net last night. Just over 20 made it to Devan Dubnyk. They managed four shots on net during an atrocious second period. Stop shooting from low percentage scoring areas. Would you like to know why Dubnyk had a shutout going until halfway through the third? Because he saw every shot that made it to him, and the ones that didn't, the Wild's shot-blocking defense saw.

2. Aim

I think that Jaskin played well last night, but his Brad Boyes impression was very untimely.

3. Stop being lazy.

The Blues have won only one game this season after more than three days rest. I get that the weird start time probably threw off their game day schedule, but what do you guys do when you have some time off that makes you forget how to play hockey? It took 50 minutes for the Blues to finally wake up and realize that they were playing a playoff game.

4. Stop trying to do too much.

I picked this along with "stop being lazy" because sometimes it's hard to figure out if the Blues are zonked out or overthinking things again. There's a large part of me that is leaning toward the latter again. There has to be a reason that a team like the Blues flubs up big games during the regular season and annually screws up in the playoffs with the exact same symptoms: confusion, bad passes, bad changes, turnovers, blah blah blah. They don't forget how to play hockey. They probably remember too much. Two players have claimed information overload to the press this season. How many more have kept that complaint behind closed doors?

5. You lack the discipline

Man, the Blues sure did talk a good talk about discipline the other day, didn't they? Steve Ott lead the charge:

"[Discipline]'s going to be a key factor," left wing Steve Ott said. "We're a big, strong team. We want to play a heavy checking style of game and when you do so, you have to ride that fine line of discipline. For us, we want to be on the right side of the power play percentages and for us, we have to keep our cool and play whistle to whistle as best as possible.

"The emotions can get the best of you in a playoff series. You can never be too high, you can never be too low. You have to find consistency in your game and as an individual. When you do so, your emotions usually stay in check."

If you'll look at the box score, you'll see that Ott got a 10 minute game misconduct toward the end of the third period in a very close game. Yes, removing himself from the ice isn't a bad thing (Steen scored while the penalty was being announced, he was so happy), but don't talk about the need for discipline and then do that. David Backes also needs to lead by example. Those of you who have read stuff that I write know that I have a serious problem with the after the whistle scrums that the Blues adore when they're down a goal or two. Oooooh, send a message! Yeah!

No, send the message by scoring. The Blues nearly did that last night, no thanks to Backes, who was sitting in the penalty box because he got cranky and cross checked someone.

I'm not saying that the Blues are dooooooone. I will say that I wasn't particularly shocked by last night's game. I hope they learned a lesson or six. I hope that Jake Allen has calmed down (I think he has). I hope they win on Saturday. This lather-rinse-repeat postseason BS has to stop.