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Takeaways from Blues’ opener of home-and-home series against Panthers

Despite a tough loss, St. Louis had a few things to be proud of.

NHL: St. Louis Blues at Florida Panthers Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports

The St. Louis Blues began another home-and-home series. This time, St. Louis opened said series in Sunrise, Florida, at the FLA Live Arena on Saturday afternoon, where the Florida Panthers edged them out 4-3 in a shootout.

Yes, Saturday’s loss was tough for the Blues. As a result, St. Louis lost their second game in a row.

Here are my takeaways from the Blues’ first game of their home-and-home series against the Panthers.

The Ville Husso show.
Yes, the Blues suffered a tough loss to the Panthers; but backup goaltender Ville Husso had one of the best performances of his career thus far. Husso made a career-high 48 saves on 51 shots, with a final save percentage of .941%.

Husso was scheduled to start because goaltender Jordan Binnington tested positive for COVID-19 and was placed on the protocol list.

I’m aware Husso hasn’t been described as the greatest backup goaltender in the league, but he’s not the worst either. He wasn’t to blame for his previous losses, which include two of his last five games. He needs more defensive help from a defensively-healthy Blues team.

Logan Brown avoids a two-game pointless drought.
Blues center Logan Brown avoided a two-game pointless drought by scoring a goal and posting a +1 rating on Saturday. Brown’s game-opening goal was his second of the early season. Dakota Joshua (1) and Ivan Barbashev (7) received the assists on Brown’s goal.

I’m sure Blues fans are happy for Brown. But, in my opinion, it’s too early to tell how good he’s going to be on the Blues’ fourth line alongside Dakota Joshua. He has only played three games as a St. Louis Blue so far.

The Blues’ fourth line of Klim Kostin, Tyler Bozak, and James Neal should be back soon. But we shall see if Brown, Joshua, or both remain in the coming days. Both can play good offense if they’re in their offensive game.

Blues unable to stop Maxim Mamim.
I’d say that the Blues were unable to stop Panthers center Maxim Mamim and their offense in general. Mamin scored two goals for his second and third goals of the season, respectively. He nearly netted a hat trick in regulation.

Panthers center Sam Reinhart told NHL.com: “[The Blues are] a tough team to play against ... They don’t give up much. I liked our determination. We were able to get rewarded and win. We felt comfortable. We felt it was our best 60 (minutes) in a while. You’ve got to give credit to them too. It’s not really a shocker it went down to the wire.”

The Blues host the Panthers at the Enterprise Center on Tuesday, Dec. 7 at 7:00 pm Central.