St. Louis vs Las Vegas Recap

1201241021837767.GHFFubu4tDisu1dsOzGw_height640

Blues Bully The Knights

An early candidate for game of the year occurred last night in Las Vegas. The Blues and the Golden Knights battled it out in a fantastic performance by both teams. The Blues win 3-1 and return home with a 3-0-0 record after their first road trip.

Both goalies were stars last night. Jordan Binnington stopped 42 shots on 43 attempts. Robin Lehner of Vegas stopped 35 shots on 37 attempts. Both goalies made stop after stop throughout the game, leading to an intense finish down the stretch.

The Blues started the game by out shooting Vegas 7-0. Led by hard hits and pressure, the Blues took control of the game. Unfortunately, all it took was a 2-1 break away for Vegas to take an early lead on a goal from William Karlsson. The Blues outplayed the Knights in the first period but the Knights led at the first intermission.

In the second period you could see the wheels turning for the Blues and finally they got one to go in the back of the net. Off a rebound, the former Blackhawk Brandon Saad scored to tie the game at one. Saad tallied his first goal in a Blues uniform and the twitter world was all about it. That would be the only goal scored in the second period.

The back and forth game was full of action with great shots on goal, great saves and a lot of physicality. The game was decided by a turnover by the Knights that led to a 3 on 0 for the Blues and Vladimir Tarasenko broke the tie with his first goal of the season. After the goal, Tarasenko went after his old teammate Alex Pietrangelo who was trying to pick a fight with Brayden Schenn. Tarasenko played his best game in a long time for the Blues last night.

Late in the third period, the Knights pulled the goalie in hopes of scoring on the advantage but Ivan Barbashev was not going to let that happen, as he scored an empty-net goal to give the final score of 3-1.

Brick Wall Binnington

Jordan Binnington shined last night for the St. Louis Blues with one of his best performances. At times, the Blues defense left Binnington out to dry but he was able to stand tall and make the important saves. As always, Binnington made a few highlight reel saves.

This is the type of performance St. Louis needs from Binnington in order to succeed. It is easy to say if your goalie makes more saves than the other then you will win, but in the last two seasons Binnington has had trouble with some of the easier shots. Last night that was not the case. Binnington looked like a brick wall in net.

Tarasenko Back To His Old Self

In his 10th season with the St. Louis Blues, there has not been more uncertainty surrounding Tarasenko than this year. The offseason provided quite a bit of confusion as Tarasenko asked for a trade but the front office was unable to find a team for Tarasenko that provided a good return. That being said, it has allowed Tarasenko to get healthy and he now is all in on this team.

Last night was a redemption game for Tarasenko in a way and also a game to let the hockey world know that he has not gone anywhere. Tarasenko started on the fourth line last night and slowly moved his way up throughout the game.

Tarasenko notched his first goal of the season last night in the third period off a pass from Jordan Kyrou. It was a big moment for Tarasenko and his teammates could not have been happier for him.

As a fan of Vladimir Tarasenko, there is nothing better than seeing him healthy and still in a Blues uniform. Tarasenko is a franchise type player and I hope he sticks around for years to come.

Why The Blues Can Be An Underdog

The Western Conference is arguably better than it has been in a long time. Looking at the odds of winning the division and the conference, the Blues are not favored in either. With top teams like Vegas and Colorado, the Blues are able to fly under the radar.

When looking at teams like Vegas and Colorado, they are fast teams that like to play at a fast pace. That is not the Blues M.O. The Blues are a hard hitting team and a team that will wear you down. You could tell in the game against Vegas that the repetitive hard hits took a toll on the Knights. They were frustrated and tired towards the end of the game.

Looking at the Central Division alone the Blues have the fourth best odds behind the Avalanche, Wild and the Stars. This team has one of the best coaches in the National Hockey League and a coach that is a perfect fit for how the team plays. Not to mention, they also have one of the best General Managers who makes very good moves at the right time it seems.

While it is only three games into the season, the Blues have made a profound statement about the type of team they are. When we get towards the end of the season, do not be surprised to see this team towards the top of the division and the conference.

Next Up

The Blues return home and host their home opener Saturday night at 7 p.m. CT, hosting the Los Angeles Kings. If you are headed to the game, get you vocal chords ready as you are asked to partake in the singing of the National Anthem this year.