Rivalry night, indeed: Blues squeeze by Blackhawks in shootout

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It hasn’t always (or maybe even often) been pretty for the St. Louis Blues, but they’ve been resilient enough to stay in the Central Division race.

Wednesday provided a showcase for that do-what-it-takes mentality, as they managed a 3-2 shootout win against the Chicago Blackhawks. With this win, St. Louis is now a point behind Chicago and the Dallas Stars in this hotly contested division.

Jake Allen likely deserves the most credit for this win, as he helped the Blues navigate some choppy waters early on. The Blackhawks opened the scoring by taking advantage of a controversial five-minute major and game misconduct on Ryan Reaves.

That moment planted the seeds for a physical contest that lived up to the “rivalry night” billing.

Eventually, the Blues started to get some penalty calls going their way (initially to Bronx cheers from the St. Louis crowd). St. Louis scored twice on the power play, yet they couldn’t keep Artemi Panarin from sending this game to overtime.

The two teams got through that 3-on-3 OT, and then the shootout provided plenty of thrills, including a stupendous goal by Panarin.

Ultimately, the Blues came out on top, and they provided another reminder that they won’t be easy to deal with. We’ll need to wait and see if they’re peskier in the race for the division title or more so a headache of a first-round opponent.