The Playoff Buzzer: Binnington continues to provide answers; Pietrangelo leads the way

  • There will be no need to guarantee a Game 7 as we’re all getting on following the St. Louis Blues’ 4-1 win against the Dallas Stars on Sunday. A tight game was blown open in the third period and Ben Bishop was yanked. Read about it below. 

Blues 4, Stars 1 (Series tied 3-3; Game 7 airs at 8 p.m. ET on Tuesday on NBCSN; live stream)

This game seemed to be following the script after 40 minutes. A narrow 2-1 lead held by the Blues seemed fitting after a good start and some hard work in the second period. The series has been tight, but a sequence of events beginning with Ben Bishop getting drilled by a howitzer blew this one wide open. With Bishop writhing in pain on the ground, a quick-thinking Alex Steen got the puck on net and Jaden Schwartz deposited it into the open cage for a 3-1 lead. Sammy Blais then effectively ended the game with a blast from the top of the circle to make it 4-1, ending Bishop’s night and forcing a glorious Game 7.

Three stars

1. Jordan Binnington, St. Louis Blues

J-Binn came into this game having another question levied upon him that needed an answer. How would he play in his first game facing elimination?

The answer came in the form of three numbers preceded by a decimal point: .957. Numbers like that don’t often lose hockey games and Binnington’s glowing save percentage — stopping 22-of-23 shots he faced — just another testament to having veins filled with ice.

His reward for such a stellar game? Another test: How will he handle the pressure of a Game 7? We’ll find out on Tuesday night.

2. Sammy Blais, St. Louis Blues

Making his Stanley Cup Playoffs debut, Blais recorded a goal and an assist to help the Blues force a Game 7.

Blais’ goal came when he decided to keep the puck on a 2-on-0 and launch a rocket past Ben Bishop in the third period to make it 4-1 Blues.

Blais becomes the 12th player in Blues’ history to score a goal in his playoff debut, and first since 2009.

3. Alex Pietrangelo, St. Louis Blues 

Sorry Stars fans, but losing 4-1 isn’t going to get you in the Three Stars section.

Pietrangelo scored a captain’s goal just 63 seconds into the first period to announce to his team — and the Stars — his intentions facing elimination. That’s just the type of performance you need from your leader and Pietrangelo didn’t disappoint.

Highlight of the night

Not a highlight, per se, but a must-see:

Factoids

MONDAY’S GAMES

Game 6: Boston Bruins at Columbus Blue Jackets (Boston leads 3-2) 7 p.m. ET on NBCSN (stream here)
Game 6:
San Jose Sharks at Colorado Avalanche (San Jose leads 3-2) 10 p.m. ET on NBCSN (stream here)


Scott Billeck is a writer for Pro Hockey Talk on NBC Sports. Drop him a line at phtblog@nbcsports.com or follow him on Twitter @scottbilleck

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