It was an emotional night at Joe Louis Arena as Detroit Red Wings fans paid tribute to late owner Mike Ilitch, but on the ice, the St. Louis Blues were the ones controlling all the momentum. Then again, they’ve been hogging a lot of the momentum since Mike Yeo took over for Ken Hitchcock.
They’ve won eight of 10 games overall, but looking a little closer makes their accomplishments even more impressive. Instead of a five-game road trip ending the “honeymoon” period for Yeo, they won all of those games. They’ve won six of seven under Yeo so far.
While it’s true that Petr Mrazek probably kicks himself for Ivan Barbashev’s 1-0 goal, the bottom line is that Detroit just couldn’t get much going against that smothering St. Louis possession game. Mike Milbury critiqued Mrazek for allowing the eventual game-winner by being off his angle:
This leaves the Blues fairly comfortably in the third spot in the Central, or failing that, seemingly in a great position to at least make the playoffs. It makes questions about what to do with Kevin Shattenkirk that much tougher, but it’s a better problem to have than all the questions they were facing when things were getting uglier under Hitch.