After the first 10 minutes of Game 1, it might not have been shocking to hear that Game 2 of the Los Angeles Kings-St. Louis Blues contest would feature a 4-0 lead. Few would have expected the Kings to hold that advantage over the second-seeded Blues after 20 minutes, though.
The Kings already have a 1-0 series lead so the defensively solid Blues face the disturbing thought of going to Los Angeles down 2-0. Brian Elliott shouldn’t get sole blame for St. Louis generally looking flat and flustered, yet many Blues fans probably wish that Jaroslav Halak was available for relief work.
Halak is still banged up from an injury he suffered in the first round, however, so Ken Hitchcock would be forced to turn to promising but inexperienced prospect Jake Allen if he wants to make a change in net.
It’s a stunning set of events for a notably silent St. Louis crowd, so the big question is: can the Blues bounce back in Game 2 or in the series in general? We will find out as the game goes along, but 4-0 might just be too much for St. Louis.
(Although the San Jose Sharks might note to their first round opponents that the Kings aren’t unbeatable in such a scenario …)
Here’s the early Mike Richards goal that began the chaos:
If you think the Dallas Stars are struggling because of defense more than anything else, then you’ll make sure to keep the video above “on file.”
There Kari Lehtonen was, helpless on a 2-on-0 rush for the Calgary Flames, which Johnny Gaudreau finished with calm and ease. For some, that goal is the symbol of the Stars’ season.
Either way, it was a painful goal in the Flames’ 2-1 win against the Stars. Calgary won despite Dallas firing 30 shots on goal versus the Flames’ 20.
One team climbing, the other stumbling
With that, the Flames are now on a four-game winning streak. Since falling to 5-10-1 on Nov. 12, the Flames have gone 9-3-1 in their last 13 games, pushing them to 14-13-2 overall. Gaudreau coming back is the icing on the cake after Chad Johnson really took charge of the Flames’ top job.
During a similar span, the Stars can’t seem to get it together. Dallas stood at 6-6-3 after beating the Oilers 3-2 on Nov. 11. They’re now 10-11-6, essentially standing in place as a .500 team.
Dallas can’t seem to get momentum going, a thought that might have left them envious of the team on the other end of the ice on Tuesday.
On Tuesday, it wasn’t just about Jack Eichel vs. Connor McDavid. Instead, it was a clash between a fleet of young scorers who were in their prime, with the Buffalo Sabres coming up on top against the Edmonton Oilers.