Including the first two games of their Western Conference semifinal, the St. Louis Blues have now played the Los Angeles Kings six times this year.
And here’s how their power play has fared in each of those six games.
Oct. 18 (Kings 5, Blues 0): 0-for-4
Nov. 22 (Kings 3, Blues 2): 0-for-6
Feb. 3 (Blues 1, Kings 0): 0-for-1
Mar. 22 (Kings 1, Blues 0): 0-for-3
Apr. 28 (Kings 3, Blues 1): 0-for-3
Apr. 30 (Kings 5, Blues 2): 0-for-9
Add it all up, and St. Louis has gone 0-for-26 on the power play against Los Angeles this year.
Yeah. Zero for twenty-six.
In addition to, you know, not putting pucks in the opponent’s goal, there’s another problem with the Blues power play: LA has scored shorthanded goals in consecutive contests.
While scoring down a man is the Kings’ strength — they’ve scored four shorties this postseason, as many as the other 15 teams combined — it’s something St. Louis almost never let happen. The Blues allowed just three shorthanded goals in 82 regular season contests.
“Shorthanded goals take away a lot of momentum,” Blues coach Ken Hitchcock told the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. “We’ve had two shorthanded goals [against] in two games. Careless play by us.”
If the Blues have any shot of getting back in this series, they’ll have to sort out the PP. It was arguably the biggest reason why St. Louis dispatched of San Jose in five games — the Blues went 6-for-18 overall with two of the four game-winners coming on the PP.
Head coach Ken Hitchcock knows things have to change.
“The way we played on the power play doesn’t feel good,” he told NHL.com. “But we’ve got two days to regroup here and put our best forward.