Game #52: St. Louis Blues Vs Ottawa Senators | 6:30 CST | FSNMW
51 GP 55
30 W 27
14 L 21
7 OT 7
67 P 61
0.657 P% 0.555
2.45 G/G 2.84
1.94 GA/G 3.07
13.1 PP% 16.8
81.4 PK% 81.2
31.6 S/G 31.1
26.4 SA/G 32.2
49.6 FO% 50.0
Jamie Langenbrunner-David Backes-T.J. Oshie
David Perron-Patrik Berglund-Matt D'Agostini
Chris Porter-Vladimir Sobotka-Chris Stewart
B.J. Crombeen-Scott Nichol-Ryan Reaves
Barret Jackman-Kevin Shattenkirk
Carlo Colaiacovo-Alex Pietrangelo
Kris Russell-Roman Polak
Eric Condra-Jason Spezza-Milan Michalek
Nick Foligno-Kyle Turris-Daniel Alfredsson
Colin Greening-Zack Smith-Chris Neil
Kaspars Daugavins-Zenon Konopka-Jim O'Brien
Filip Kuba-Erik Karlsson
Jared Cowen-Sergei Gonchar
Chris Phillips-Matt Carkner
OTTAWA - Blues goalie Jaroslav Halak set the standard in Montreal last month, leaving the ice to a standing ovation from the opposing fans when he shut out his former club, 3-0.
It was mentioned to former Ottawa Senator Brian Elliott that anything less than a standing ovation tonight at Scotiabank Place wouldn't be accepted. "I don't think so," Elliot said, smiling. "I don't think you can expect anything like that. It was cool to see that in Montreal."Elliott, who leads the NHL with a 1.69 goals-against average, will be making only his second start in the Blues' last nine games. He's made one start in the past 25 days, a 3-2 shootout loss to Pittsburgh.
Coming out of the NHL all-star break, Blues coach Ken Hitchcock gave Halak the nod against LA and he posted a 1-0 shutout, leading to the start Saturday in Nashville. But Hitchcock had planned all along that Elliott would play tonight in Ottawa, where he spent parts of five seasons."Same deal as Halak," Hitchcock said. "Brian played here and he wants to put on a good show and we're going to give him that obligation and see how he does. I've said before, we coach people that play hockey ... we just don't coach hockey."The Senators, who are 0-5-1 in their last six games, will be hungry for a goal. They put 49 shots on net Saturday against Toronto, but fell 5-0 to the Maple Leafs. Their scoring drought entering into tonight is 82 minutes, 48 seconds.
"Ells is a great story, but for us today, it gets thrown on the back burner," Ottawa forward Jason Spezza said. "It was great to see him over the All-Star break, and we're happy for the success he's had, but for us, it's really a non-issue. We're worried about playing the St. Louis Blues. We're focused on the game."If Elliott picks up the shutout, but not the standing ovation, he would make Blues' history. The Senators are the only team in the NHL the Blues have never blanked.
ARNOTT SEEKS THERAPY
Blues center Jason Arnott, who will miss his second game tonight with a shoulder injury, left the team today to receive therapy in Toronto. He's expected to rejoin the club in New Jersey, but the timetable for his return remains uncertain.
"He's not ready," Hitchcock said. "I guess he's still day to day but he's certainly not going to play (Tuesday) and then we'll see. It's just not coming around like we thought it would. Its the type of injury where you can't play if you can't fully protect yourself."
Hitchcock said today that defenseman Kent Huskins, who has been out since October with an ankle injury, is 90-95 percent healthy and "almost ready to go."As far as the plan when Huskins returns, Hitchcock said he doesn't intend to put the defenseman into the lineup as soon as he's available."I think if a (defenseman) gets hurt or we're not happy with a guy, then we wouldn't hesitate to play him," Hitchcock said. "But the six guys have done a great job here. And I think that unless somebody pushes his way out, then Husky will have to wait his turn. And then when it's his turn, I'm sure he's going to take advantage of it."
PERRON IMPRESSES STORE CLERK
On Monday night, Blues forward David Perron went out to dinner with family and afterwards walked into a local hockey store in Ottawa. He stopped in the stick department and browsed for a few minutes before seeing a shooting alley with a net.
"I got in there for probably a half-hour just ripping pucks," said Perron, who has a blister on his hand to prove it. "The guy there was pretty impressed with my shot. He said, 'You've got a helluva shot.' I just started laughing and said, 'Thanks.' He probably thought I was some junior guy that played a while back and stopped playing. It was pretty funny. I never told him who I was. I'm not going in there to get recognized." Teammate Kevin Shattenkirk wasn't buying the last part - that Perron didn't want to get recognized. "He definitely dropped his name, there's no doubt about it," Shattenkirk said. "He said, 'I'm David Perron, I'm coming to shoot pucks. He probably got them all around him to cheer him, too ... he doesn't do anything under the radar."
There are three former Blues (and Peoria Rivermen) on the Ottawa Senators' coaching staff.
Head coach Paul MacLean was selected by the Blues in the seventh round of the 1978 NHL draft and played two full seasons in St. Louis at the end of his career in the late 1980s and early '90s. Assistants Mark Reeds and Rick Wamsley also played for the Blues - Reeds was a fifth-round pick in '79 who played several seasons in the 1980s. He and Wamsley were teammates for three seasons.
MacLean and Reeds also coached Peoria, the Blues' IHL affiliate at the time, for three seasons in the 1990s. Wamsley worked behind the Rivermen bench for part of the 2009-10 season.
"I don't think it was planned that way...," MacLean said. "Reeder and I go back a long way. We actually played in Salt Lake City together in 80-81 and we coached together in Peoria for three years, so there's definitely a relationship there that was forged a long time ago." Regarding Wamsley, MacLean joked that they were bound to cross paths because, "Wammer has played for a lot of teams. It just means he was good, I guess."Told of MacLean's comment, Wamsley replied: "All the sudden, he's played for one team..."MacLean played for Winnipeg, Detroit and the Blues.
ODDS & ENDS
- The Blues are 9-0-2 against the Eastern Conference this season.
- The Blues are 1-4 in their last five road games.
- The Blues are 13-5-2 following a loss this season.
Nice job h22. The Sens' GDT is awesome. Nobody will top it but oh well.
Hope we can get a win tonight, should be an interesting matchup.
Thanks, I actually checked theirs out too. Impressive...let me know if there's anything else you guys would like me to add for future prefrences. I liked to Toni J's idea of adding the times. Should be a good game tonight. I'm expecting both teams to be hungry and firing on all cylinders. Let's Go Blues!!!
Would like to see Stewart given some time with Backes-Oshie tonight ideally.
If Hitch is planning to match Lang-Back-Oshie against the Spezza night then it makes sense to have Langenbrunner there instead of Stewart. Ideally you'd want Sobotka there but then there would be a huge void on the third line.
I think these are smart line combos given the injuries. FW depth getting tested and finally that forward roster looks a little thin.
Would like to see Huskins take Russell's spot on the 3rd pair once he's 100% but what can I say, Im a Kris Russell hater.
Really intrigued by this game actually. I want to see how our offense responds...Ottawa is a team we shouldn't have that much trouble scoring on but who knows with our offense. Would be nice if Berglund did something.
I'm really looking forward to watching Erik Karlsson.
Also betting Reaves will have a dance partner tonight...Konopka or Carkner?