Series Thread: Blues vs. Kings

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Series Thread: Blues vs. Kings

Postby dmiles2186 » Sun Apr 28, 2013 6:54 am

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VS

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They've dominated the Blues ever since Game 1 of Round 2 last year. Time for revenge.

http://www.stltoday.com/sports/hockey/p ... a64a7.html

On occasion, Blues coach Ken Hitchcock has been known to misrepresent how far back in the standings his club stood. But on March 28, following a loss to Los Angeles on home ice, the team dropped out of the playoff picture.

“Three weeks ago, we looked up and we were in ninth place, and legit ninth place,” Hitchcock said. “I think that reality check, waking up one morning and just assuming you’re going to be in the playoffs and then all of the sudden you’re sitting in ninth place is exactly what this team needed. A reality check of getting back to who we were had to come sooner or later.”

The Blues won 12 of their last 15 games, wrapped up the No. 4 seed in the Western Conference with a 3-1 victory over Chicago Saturday and secured home-ice advantage in the first round of the playoffs.

Their prize: the defending Stanley Cup champion Los Angeles Kings.

LA defeated San Jose 3-2 late Saturday night, setting up a rematch of last year’s second-round series, swept by the Kings, who went on to win the franchise’s first Cup. Including three more victories in this year’s regular season, LA will carry an eight-game winning streak against the Blues into the conference quarterfinals.

The club, which finished the regular season 29-17-2, should be comfortable opening the postseason at Scottrade Center, where it has won six consecutive games and seven of their last eight. On Saturday, Jaden Schwartz netted two goals, David Backes had two assists, and goaltender Brian Elliott made 22 saves to beat the Blackhawks.

"Our goaltending caught fire,” Blues forward Alexander Steen said. “The thing we should look back on right now is the way that we've been playing the last little while. It seems like we've been more compact, more solid, a real solid game from the goalie right throughout the whole lineup. Very solid going forward here.”

The Blues-Kings’ series is expected to open Tuesday at Scottrade Center, with the likelihood of Game 2 on Thursday. The series is a 2-2-1-1-1, meaning game Nos. 5 and 7 (if necessary) will be back in St. Louis.

After wrapping up against Chicago, the Blues turned their attention to the LA-San Jose game, knowing that they would meet the winner. Prior to the finish of the late game, Hitchcock sized up the competition.

“Both of these teams are big strong hockey clubs on top of their games right now,” he said. “We’re going to have to step up to beat (LA) or San Jose. San Jose is probably playing the best of anybody.”

This month, the Blues seemed to have straightened out their issues at Scottrade Center, taking advantage of a final stretch in which the team hosted seven of its last eight games. They won six of those, with the only blemish a 2-0 loss to the Blackhawks.

But the challenge against Chicago Saturday was different. The Blackhawks, having already clinched the Presidents’ Trophy, kept several of their regulars back in Chicago, including Patrick Kane, Jonathan Toews, Marian Hossa and Duncan Keith.

The ‘Hawks borrowed from their American Hockey League affiliate, the Rockford IceHogs, dressing a lineup of eight rookies – three who were making their NHL debut, including goalie Carter Hutton.

That might have seemed like an unmistakable advantage for the Blues, but the scenario had the makings of a trap game, and despite falling behind early on, the IceHogs – rather the Blackhawks – were controlling the tempo temporarily.

But the Blues had mentioned earlier in the day that if they stuck to their game, they would eventually push the young ‘Hawks out of the competition, and the club did that with three unanswered goals.

Patrik Berglund opened the scoring with his 17th goal of the season, finishing one behind Chris Stewart for the Blues’ top spot in that department this year. The goal, which was assisted by Andy McDonald and Vladimir Tarasenko, came on a delayed penalty, giving the club a 1-0 lead just 4:33 into the game.

Late in the first period, Schwartz notched the first of his two goals Saturday, putting a rebound past Hutton for a 2-0 advantage. They were goal Nos. 6-7 this season for the rookie.

“Whether had some guys in or not, they’re going to work hard,” Schwartz said. “We wanted to make sure we stuck to our game plan and do the things that make us successful.”

The Blues had several chances to extend their lead, but former Blue Jamal Mayers, perhaps making his final appearance in St. Louis, prevented a goal and also McDonald hit a post.

But with 11:21 left in the second period, Schwartz poked in his second goal of the night for a 3-0 lead. Schwartz finished off a play at the net, after taking a pass from Backes, who with his second assist piled up point No. 300.

When the horn sounded, the Blues waved their sticks at the crowd of 19,841 – the 10th sellout of the season – many of whom will be back next week as the club opens up the postseason at home.

“We earned this,” Hitchcock said. “We fought hard to get back in this.”
Last edited by dmiles2186 on Wed May 01, 2013 5:36 am, edited 3 times in total.
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Re: Pre-Series Thread: Blues vs. Kings

Postby glen a richter » Sun Apr 28, 2013 7:10 am

That's the match-up I wanted, first round. Exorcise some demons or go home.
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Re: Pre-Series Thread: Blues vs. Kings

Postby dmiles2186 » Sun Apr 28, 2013 7:19 am

glen a richter wrote:That's the match-up I wanted, first round. Exorcise some demons or go home.


And with any luck, Petro won't be boarded (on a no call) in Game 1 this year to help those chances.
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Re: Pre-Series Thread: Blues vs. Kings

Postby sseagle » Sun Apr 28, 2013 7:21 am

Wtf is this pre-gdt heresy? Thou hath cursed us!
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Re: Pre-Series Thread: Blues vs. Kings

Postby glen a richter » Sun Apr 28, 2013 7:22 am

Chillax sseagle, it's not a GDT, it's well marked exactly what it is.
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Re: Pre-Series Thread: Blues vs. Kings

Postby dmiles2186 » Sun Apr 28, 2013 7:48 am

sseagle wrote:Wtf is this pre-gdt heresy? Thou hath cursed us!


The curse was chased away because I called it a pre-series thread, which is accurate. So chill out and go change your socks.
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Re: Pre-Series Thread: Blues vs. Kings

Postby sseagle » Sun Apr 28, 2013 8:53 am

dmiles2186 wrote:
sseagle wrote:Wtf is this pre-gdt heresy? Thou hath cursed us!


The curse was chased away because I called it a pre-series thread, which is accurate. So chill out and go change your socks.

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Re: Pre-Series Thread: Blues vs. Kings

Postby WaukeeBlues » Sun Apr 28, 2013 12:03 pm

glen a richter wrote:That's the match-up I wanted, first round. Exorcise some demons or go home.


This. The Kings aren't a team a-fire right now, they're not going to sneak up on anyone this time around and if we lose to these guys in 7... our own damn faults.

I like it. Defending champs and rematch in the first round. Bring it!
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Re: Pre-Series Thread: Blues vs. Kings

Postby cprice12 » Sun Apr 28, 2013 3:52 pm

It's not the matchup I wanted. I wanted San Jose...but I am really jazzed to hopefully give the Kings some payback for last year.
Elliott isn't hurt this year.
Halak isn't hurt this year.
Petro isn't hurt this year (although he isn't the Petro of last year either).
Personnel wise, we are much better now with the additions of Bouwmeester, Leopold, Tarasenko, & Schwartz is coming of age.
Their skilled guys up front scare me a bit because we can't match that with our top guys, but our defensive unit is far better than last year, and is probably the best in the NHL right now. I don't think LA will be able to sustain their insane forecheck with massive amounts of sustained pressure like they did last year because of our bolstered D. That's a big reason why we lost last year. We couldn't clear the zone and they just kept coming.

If we get the goaltending that we've been getting from Elliott since he returned...and if we are able to clear the puck out and avoid sustained pressure, I think we take this series...or at least I hope we can.
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Re: Pre-Series Thread: Blues vs. Kings

Postby Krigloch the Furious » Sun Apr 28, 2013 6:21 pm

really interested to see if the 4th line can carry over their crazy momentum to the playoffs. I really hope so, they have been fun to watch
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Re: Pre-Series Thread: Blues vs. Kings

Postby fargoblues » Sun Apr 28, 2013 6:23 pm

Krigloch the Furious wrote:really interested to see if the 4th line can carry over their crazy momentum to the playoffs. I really hope so, they have been fun to watch

I just hope the fourth line actually gets to play in the playoffs. Wouldn't surprise me to see $0.05 and Oshie in and Reaves and Cracknell/Porter out. :evil:
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Re: Pre-Series Thread: Blues vs. Kings

Postby cardsfan04 » Sun Apr 28, 2013 6:59 pm

fargoblues wrote:
Krigloch the Furious wrote:really interested to see if the 4th line can carry over their crazy momentum to the playoffs. I really hope so, they have been fun to watch

I just hope the fourth line actually gets to play in the playoffs. Wouldn't surprise me to see $0.05 and Oshie in and Reaves and Cracknell/Porter out. :evil:


If Oshie really is healthy, I think he absolutely has to play over Reaves. But, I'm not sure I want to see Nichol in over anybody.

As for playing the Kings, I get why beating them could be viewed as a major hurdle, but I'd still rather play San Jose because I think they are weaker.
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Re: Pre-Series Thread: Blues vs. Kings

Postby STLADOGG » Sun Apr 28, 2013 7:38 pm

When the Kings won last year, I was thinking a dynasty was forming. I hope I'm wrong.
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Re: Pre-Series Thread: Blues vs. Kings

Postby dmiles2186 » Mon Apr 29, 2013 8:26 am

On the ice at Scottrade. 33 1/2 hours and counting.

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Re: Pre-Series Thread: Blues vs. Kings

Postby The Flake » Mon Apr 29, 2013 8:52 am

I know our record vs. the Kings this year / last year during playoffs is not the great. If you look at the statistics though thru this season, our offense is much deeper (more people scoring more points) and our defense is much better with the signings of Bow and Leo. Its the one or two superstar offensive talents that the Kings have that can become game changers that give concern. The Blues have to have a couple of offensive guys step up and become dangerous themselves. All in all this should be a great physical series which will more than likely go the distance. My concern is that whoever makes it out of this series will be battered and worn for the next round opponent.

Blues in 7

Five predictions for Blues vs. Kings 2013 1st round series:
1.) David Backes beats the snot, blood, tears and crap out of Dustin Brown.
2.) One of Tarasenko / Schwartz finds their groove and lights up Quick.
3.) The forth line for the Blues keep their mojo going and become a difference maker.
4.) Elliot exacts some revenge from last year with outstanding performances.
5.) Petro snaps out of his funk and becomes dominant.
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Re: Pre-Series Thread: Blues vs. Kings

Postby Jaykay » Mon Apr 29, 2013 9:38 am

cprice12 wrote:It's not the matchup I wanted. I wanted San Jose...but I am really jazzed to hopefully give the Kings some payback for last year.
Elliott isn't hurt this year.
Halak isn't hurt this year.
Petro isn't hurt this year (although he isn't the Petro of last year either).
Personnel wise, we are much better now with the additions of Bouwmeester, Leopold, Tarasenko, & Schwartz is coming of age.
Their skilled guys up front scare me a bit because we can't match that with our top guys, but our defensive unit is far better than last year, and is probably the best in the NHL right now. I don't think LA will be able to sustain their insane forecheck with massive amounts of sustained pressure like they did last year because of our bolstered D. That's a big reason why we lost last year. We couldn't clear the zone and they just kept coming.

If we get the goaltending that we've been getting from Elliott since he returned...and if we are able to clear the puck out and avoid sustained pressure, I think we take this series...or at least I hope we can.


Not that I become a curt-fanboy, but this is what I think! Also I preferred SJ over LA.

I love our D, not only Pietro Leo and Bowmeester, but also and maily Polak. In my eyes Polak improved the most from last year. In the finals in Switzerland, it was the most Defensiv-minded team, which won it all, maybe another reason, why I love our D :D

Too bad I will miss the first 3-4 games, since I leave for the WC in Stockholm next Thursday. Hopefully the boys are still in the race, when I'll be back home again.
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Re: Pre-Series Thread: Blues vs. Kings

Postby SteveO » Mon Apr 29, 2013 10:17 am

FYI, I won't be able to go to any games this week so I have 2 for sale in 305 Row L.

Will take 110 for the pair. I work downtown and have the tickets already.

PM if you want them!

Thanks.
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Re: Pre-Series Thread: Blues vs. Kings

Postby dmiles2186 » Mon Apr 29, 2013 10:51 am

JR on Twitter:

#stlblues lines: 9-42-20, 57-21-74/91, 10-17-25, 79-32-75...26-12-15

Very interesting that it's Senko and Oshie that are being swapped. 4th line still intact.
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Re: Pre-Series Thread: Blues vs. Kings

Postby Jaykay » Mon Apr 29, 2013 11:45 am


Bouwmeester focused on an extended playoff run
Monday, 04.29.2013 / 10:48 AM / Blues vs Kings - 2013 SCP Conference Quarterfinals
By Louie Korac - NHL.com Correspondent


ST. LOUIS -- Jay Bouwmeester never been has known for his flamboyant personality.

Bouwmeester is known more for a mellow, low-key demeanor, so one could forgive him for not being exuberant when the St. Louis Blues clinched a playoff spot. It means after 764 games in 10 NHL seasons, Bouwmeester will skate in his first Stanley Cup Playoff game when the Blues face the defending Stanley Cup champion Los Angeles Kings beginning Tuesday.

Although Bouwmeester, 29, does have playoff experience -- he went to the Calder Cup Finals with the Chicago Wolves in 2004-05 -- Blues coach Ken Hitchcock said: "I think it was bantam triple-A, Southside Athletic Club, last time he was in."
Bouwmeester's name forever will be intertwined with the likes of Guy Charron [734 regular-season games, never made the playoffs] and former Calgary Flames teammate Olli Jokinen, who finally made the postseason in 2009 after 799 career games. But the ignominious count finally has come to a conclusion.

However, Bouwmeester's reaction followed in step with his low-key, mellow persona.

"It's good, I guess," Bouwmeester said.

I guess? No high-fives or any long exhale?

"It's nice to know that you're going to get the chance to play [in the postseason]," Bouwmeester said. "… Once the season's over and once you get right into it, then that's when everyone gets excited. That's the way I approach it."

The third pick in the 2002 NHL Draft, Bouwmeester was expected to be the face of the Florida Panthers franchise for a number of years. And in the six seasons Bouwmeester spent with the Panthers, they finished .500 or better in the final four. But all six seasons had a common theme -- no postseason appearances.

When Bouwmeester signed a five-year, $33.4-million contract to play for the Flames, it was a move that was expected to make Calgary one of the contenders in the Western Conference for years to come. Again, Bouwmeester's Flames teams had strong regular-season records but no postseason appearances, as the Flames finished with plus-.500 records and 90-plus points in Bouwmeester's first three seasons.

The durable blueliner has carried his current ironman streak of 635 consecutive regular-season games played and has added solid numbers to his resume. But that playoff void has been the black cloud hanging over his career.

"Everyone's in different situations," Bouwmeester said. "We started out with a team that was struggling a bit [in Florida]. Calgary, we didn't have the success that we wanted. For whatever reason, I've been asked that question [about the playoffs] a lot. Every year is kind of a different, fresh start. I guess I've just been answering the question too long that I don't care anymore."

Bouwmeester has heard it all. He's heard about being the high draft pick that never made an impact on the teams he's played for. But in his defense, Bouwmeester's supporting cast never has lived up to expectations, either.
"He was in the growing stages in Florida, and then he ends up in Calgary and I think there were high expectations there and they didn't meet them," Hitchcock said. "They were close a couple times in Calgary.

"You get that stigma, it's a tough stigma to overcome. He's a big reason we got where we got right now. Him and [Jordan] Leopold have helped unbelievably well and they've done a great job of fitting in with the guys. They've really endeared themselves to their teammates here. It's nice to see."

Bouwmeester saw the direction the Flames were headed this season, and knew a roster overhaul was coming. Bouwmeester and captain Jarome Iginla were the headline players that were expected to be moved.

Iginla waived his no-trade clause to go to the Pittsburgh Penguins. Bouwmeester, who also had a no-trade clause in his contract, gave general manager Jay Feaster a list of teams he'd be willing to move to if -- and only if -- the Flames wanted and needed to rid themselves of his $6.6-million cap hit. Bouwmeester has one more year remaining in the deal he signed in 2009.

The Blues were at the top of the list, and with general manager Doug Armstrong admitting the team was after Bouwmeester's services for roughly a year, Bouwmeester didn't find it difficult to leave Calgary, with his wife and young daughter temporarily staying behind.

"I looked at this team and thought it was a good, young team," Bouwmeester said of the Blues, who went 12-3-0 in April [11-3-0 after Bouwmeester's arrival]. "I know from playing against them it's a hard team to play against. I knew at the time nothing was guaranteed. But we got on a bit of a roll and I'm happy that it worked out the way it did.

"It's been good. It's fun winning. I've had a pretty good stretch here. It's a good group of guys that's coming up that's kind of a young group of guys, and you feel a little bit old sometimes. It's been fun. I've enjoyed my time here. Hopefully I'll have a long time here."

Bouwmeester's teammates certainly have appreciated his contributions, including giving the team a complement partner for Alex Pietrangelo.

"He's been phenomenal for us," Blues captain David Backes said of Bouwmeester. "His responsibility in the defensive zone, the way he can join a rush and make plays in the offensive zone has been phenomenal. He deserves [going to the playoffs] as much as anyone, so it's great to see him get in there. … Those [end-of-season meetings] are not fun meetings to have and watching the playoffs on TV [isn't fun], so we're going to hopefully put it together and stay playing the games instead of watching them."

Added teammate Chris Stewart: "He's really added a lot of composure to our [defense] core. This is one of the reasons why he wanted to come to us. He wanted to get into the playoffs and he believed in us. We wanted to show him that he made a good choice.

"I think it says tons. Anytime you get a compliment from an opposing player on another team who for sure has kind of a say in where he's going to go prior to the trade deadline is obviously a bonus. He must think we're a serious contender or he wouldn't have come on board."

For the first time in his NHL career, Bouwmeester, who finished with one goal and six assists in 14 games with the Blues [seven goals and 22 points in 47 total games], won't have to decide if he'll represent Canada at the IIHF World Championship. That's because he and the Blues will be preparing to face the Kings in a best-of-seven first-round playoff series.

Bouwmeester couldn't be more pleased with that notion, or ridding himself of the persistent reminder of never making the playoffs.

"It's exciting," Bouwmeester said. "It's something I've wanted and been looking forward to for a long time. It's just an opportunity. Really, when your season ends in April, you never get that opportunity to go for the Cup. That's what everyone wants when you play the game because you want to win.

"The only nice thing is you don't have to answer that question anymore. Other than that, every year, that's your goal. Number one, get in the playoffs and then go from there. It doesn't change, no matter who you are or where you are."



http://www.nhl.com/ice/news.htm?id=6682 ... l:topheads


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Re: Pre-Series Thread: Blues vs. Kings

Postby STLADOGG » Mon Apr 29, 2013 11:52 am

I saw this on facebook:
Here is broadcast information for Games 1-4. Broadcast information for remaining games will be available at a later date.
Game 1: FOX Sports Midwest, Y98 FM
Game 2: FOX Sports Midwest, Y98 FM
Game 3: FOX Sports Midwest, KMOX 1120 AM
Game 4: FOX Sports Midwest, KMOX 1120 AM

What the....FSMW, I have a hockey game during the first game.
Anyone know whats going on? I've heard national coverage and this shit.
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