If the strategy of the Blues Saturday night was to allow the Columbus Blue Jackets to get a ton of chances early and get tired after playing Friday night and traveling to St. Louis in the early morning hours, it worked.
While the Blues also traveled from North Carolina, they were playing at home, and everybody knows the Blues are undefeated at home. In the end it was a satisfying 4-1 win that demonstrated some scoring depth that’s been missing so far this season. If they could keep doing that for a while, that would be great.
It was hard to tell for much of the game that this was the back end of two back-to-backs. The game was played at a pretty fast pace. Through two periods the Jackets had 25 shots and the Blues 26. But after a first-period goal by the other Vladimir (Sobotka) in the final minute of the first period, the Blues would not trail the rest of the game.
It was Sobotka’s first goal of the season. Then in the second Scottie Upshall got his first after deflecting in with his skate a shot by Joel Edmundson who would get in on the scoring in the third period with his third of the season. Wait, a Blues defenseman scored a goal? That’s not anything special or new.
Then in the third after the Blue Jackets got on the scoreboard, Kyle Brodziak crashed the net and found the puck between the post and the pads of goaltender Joonas Korpislao. He celebrated like he was saying, “are you not entertained??!!” We were, sir. We were. It was his second of the season.
So in other words, the Blues got a pretty convincing win without major scoring contributions from Alex Pietrangelo, Brayden Schenn, Jaden Schwartz or Vladimir Tarasenko. And don’t be mistaken, that’s a really good thing cause those guys won’t be able to do it every night. Most nights, sure. But not every damn night.
Remember when Ken Hitchcock was the guy in charge of the post-game buffet and the line combinations? He used to talk about cheese. And how good hockey teams have no passengers. And when the Blues would lose, they’d sometimes have too many passengers. The Blues didn’t have any passengers Saturday, except maybe Vince Dunn. He was the only player on the Blues without a shot on goal. Slacker. (Sorry man, don’t take it personally; we hope you stay on the Blues when Jay Bouwmeester comes back from injury, and it’s cool to see you on the power play, buddy.)
The Blues are in a stretch of games where they don’t see a Central Division opponent from Oct. 17 (Blackhawks) until Black Friday (Nashville). So it’s hit or miss each night how much intensity each matchup has in store. When the Kings come calling Monday night, there might be some pushing and shoving. The Kings will probably come in and talk about how they don’t like provel cheese. And they’ll be wrong. Bet they don’t even deep fry their ravioli. West Coast elitists.
I used to write regularly around this here website. It’s nice to pinch hit for someone with more happening on a Saturday night than I do. It’s part of getting old. Don’t do it, kids.
Here’s what you should take away from this game, bullet point style, like Gallagher used to do.
- Jake Allen looked a lot better, and not just because he only allowed one goal. He looked more comfortable, more stable. He didn’t look like he was chasing the play. That’s big. He should keep doing that.
- The Blue Jackets are boring.
- Winning at home is fun.
- Carter Hutton won’t appear in a game until the Blues are on the road.
- Joel Edmundson is going to get a lot of goals at this pace.
The goal horn tonight was broken, so they played a recording of the horn. That was low def. Quiet. Underwhelming. Fix the thing faster than you fixed the escalators, Blues.
You probably knew most of that stuff, especially if you follow us on the Twitter.
Hey, you read our fan-run paper, right? We sell it outside every home game by the garage driveway, the 14th Street doors and the northeast corner of 14th and Clark. It’s a Blues tradition since January 1995. You don’t want to break tradition, do you? Good. Thanks for reading.