It’s funny how things can change in the postseason. The Blues started with a confident Ville Husso in net, who promptly backed up Craig Berube’s decision to make him the playoff starter with a shutout. Husso had wrested Binnington’s starter position from him during the regular season, out-performing Binnington at nearly every level. Amongst goalies who started at least 15 games, Binnington hovered near the bottom of the league. He ranked 46th in save percentage with .901 and 48th in GAA with a goals against of 3.13.
After games two and three against the Minnesota Wild, a 6-2 and 5-1 loss, respectively, Binnington got the call to get back into the net and reclaim his job and reputation as the Blues’ playoff starter. Binnington did just that with gusto, leading the Blues to a round one victory, and becoming the Blues’ winningest playoff goaltender. He leads the list of current playoff starters with a .949 save percentage and a 1.72 GAA.
And now he’s out.
Binnington was knocked clean out of the game - and possibly the series - last night. Going hard to the net, Nazem Kadri got tied up with Calle Rosen. Both players went into Binnington awkwardly in a play that the TNT crew, including Darren Pang, deemed an unfortunate accident:
Craig Berube (and many in the Blues’ fanbase) disagreed:
Berube on the collision and an update on Binnington's lower-body injury: "Look at Kadri's reputation. That's all I've got to say. ... He's being evaluated, and I won't know until tomorrow." #stlblues pic.twitter.com/UOCoEWUaZg— Bally Sports Midwest (@BallySportsMW) May 22, 2022
Regardless of whether or not Kadri was at fault here, it doesn’t change the outcome. Jordan Binnington is out, he’s being evaluated, and the Blues are calling up a goaltender.
The moment that Binnington left the game, the wheels fell off of the Blues’ bus - though they were able to keep it a much closer game through a bulk of the third period than the final score looks like. Whether this was the Blues just being rattled by an on-game loss, or something bigger, remains to be seen. They’ll have at least two more chances to prove this wasn’t the start of sloppy execution for the goalie that they played arguably better in front of this season.