John Kelly: Blues Notes
The Blues six-game home stand got off the ground in awesome fashion with Tuesdays 6-1 victory over Vancouver. I felt heading into the home stand the Blues needed at least four wins to get the club going in the right direction.
Some people were pushing the panic button a little early, but I felt the Blues problems were in one area that was very correctable. Andy Murray's team just needed to score some goals. Prior to Tuesday's six-goal explosion the Blues had scored six goals in their previous five games. Heck, the Note scored four goals in 7:35 in the first period against the team that knocked them out of the playoffs last spring.
All season the Blues have had superb goaltending and for the most part solid defensive play all around. However, the reason the team was a game under .500 was simple a lack of offense. Hopefully the six-goals against Vancouver will get the team going and give them some much needed confidence.
I really liked Andy Murray's line combinations on Tuesday. Bergland remained at center between Oshie and Eller and McDonald played between Boyes and Perron. The third line featured Backes at center between Tkachuk and Janssen and the energy line remained intact with McLement, Crombeen and Kariya. I've always felt McDonald was a more effective player as a center and his line was dominant against the Canucks. And moving big "Walt" back to his natural position of left wing makes sense. I know the Blues have used Tkachuk at center with some success, but I think he's more effective on the wing.
Now that the Blues have had some scoring success for the first time in a few weeks we'll see if it continues into the next few games against Nashville and San Jose. We haven't seen how good this team can be when firing on all cylinders. Hopefully we'll find out in the next few weeks.
John Kelly is the play-by-play announcer for St. Louis Blues hockey on FOX Sports Midwest. Kelly comes from a family with a rich background in hockey announcing: his father, Dan Kelly, was the radio and television voice of the Blues for 21 years and younger brother Dan Jr. and uncle Hal also worked as NHL broadcasters. Kelly returned to St. Louis following the 2003-04 NHL season. He called Colorado Avalanche games for the first nine seasons the team was located in Denver. John will be contributing a weekly blog to FOXSportsMidwest.com.