Kukla's Korner

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Category: St-Louis-Blues

From Both Sides- Colorado/St. Louis

from Sean Keeler of the Denver Post,

You don’t think the Stanley Cup is a bucket full of bonkers? It took a career Detroit Red Wing to finally end the Avalanche’s second-round playoff curse.

“You know, when I signed (here), there were friends I’d made that lived in Detroit that kind of gave me a little bit of (crud),” Helm, the Avs’ fourth-line center, cracked after his game-winning goal against St. Louis here Friday night sent Colorado to its first Stanley Cup conference final since 2002. “(But) they’re happy to see me here, winning, seeing the team (be) successful.”

With 5.6 seconds left in a 2-2 game, Helm, who’d signed with the Avs after 14 seasons with the (boo) Wings (hiss), cocked his stick back with both hands from the left face-off circle.

The lamp lit. Enterprise Center slumped.


from Ben Frederickson of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch,

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Filed in: NHL Teams, Colorado Avalanche, St. Louis Blues, | KK Hockey | Permalink

From Both Sides- St. Louis Blues/Colorado Avalanche

from Benjamin Hochman of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch,

Inside a quiet elevator in a silenced arena, the doors opened to reveal the biggest Blues fan there is.

Tom Stillman, hockey-loving chairman of the Blues, stepped into a Ball Arena elevator to go down to ice level, where it had just happened.

It, of course, being the impossible.

“That was hard on the heart,” Stillman said. “But it showed the team has a lot of heart.”

Even before puck-drop, it was hard to believe the Blues would win this game. After their embarrassing showing in Game 4 at home, Game 5 at Ball Arena was supposed to be a Colorado coronation — finally, the Avs would return to the conference final for the first time since 2002.

Then consider that down 3-1 in the best-of-seven series, the Blues were down 3-0 in Game 5’s second period.

It was over. This column would be an obituary.


Below find Mark Kiszla of the Denver Post and the game highlights.

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Filed in: NHL Teams, Colorado Avalanche, St. Louis Blues, | KK Hockey | Permalink

Video- David Perron Fined

NEW YORK (May 24, 2022) – St. Louis Blues forward David Perron has been fined $5,000, the maximum allowable under the Collective Bargaining Agreement, for cross-checking Colorado Avalanche forward Nazem Kadri during Game 4 of the teams’ Second Round series in St. Louis on Monday, May 23, the National Hockey League’s Department of Player Safety announced today.

The incident occurred at 5:30 of the second period. Perron was assessed a minor penalty for cross-checking.

Watch below.

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Filed in: NHL Teams, St. Louis Blues, | KK Hockey | Permalink

6-3 Loss Puts The Blues One Loss Away From Elimination

from Jim Thomas of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch,

The plan was to stay focused and worry about winning – not retribution on Nazem Kadri. But it was Kadri who got the last laugh, in triplicate.

Kadri’s first NHL postseason hat trick put the Colorado Avalanche in firm control of this series with a 6-3 victory over the Blues on Monday at Enterprise Center. As a result, the series heads back to Denver with the Avs up three games to one in the best-of-7 series.

As much as the game may have been a personal vindication for Kadri, who said comments by coach Craig Berube fueled his fire, poor 5-on-5 play and a subpar night by goalie Ville Husso had more to do with the Blues’ undoing.

“We got outskated for most of the game, 5-on-5,” Berube said. “It's pretty simple, I don't know why. We got outskated. They outskated us. Got to every loose puck. Lost a lot of puck battles.”


Game highlights are below.

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Filed in: NHL Teams, St. Louis Blues, | KK Hockey | Permalink

Nazem Kadri Has Received Threats Against Him

from Sportsnet,

The Colorado Avalanche say local law enforcement are working with the NHL team to investigate threats made to forward Nazem Kadri after Game 3 of a Western Conference semifinal against the host St. Louis Blues on Saturday.

"The Avalanche organization is aware of threats made toward Nazem Kadri and is working with local law enforcement to investigate," the team said in a statement on Sunday.

Kadri, while chasing a loose puck, bowled over Blues goalie Jordan Binnington in the first period.

The Blues announced Sunday that Binnington will miss the rest of the series with a lower-body injury.


Filed in: NHL Teams, Colorado Avalanche, St. Louis Blues, | KK Hockey | Permalink

Video- Jordan Binnington May Have A Knee Injury

from Jeremy Rutherford of The Athleitc,

Jordan Binnington’s reclamation of the Blues’ starting goaltending position and the rekindling of his 2019 Stanley Cup performance could be over depending on how long St. Louis remains in the postseason.

There’s no definitive word yet, but reliable sources told The Athletic after Binnington left Game 3 in the first period Saturday following a collision that the team feared it might lose him for multiple weeks with a possible right-knee sprain.

If so, the Blues might have to advance to the Western Conference final or perhaps even the Stanley Cup Final for Binnington to return to postseason action, and perhaps even that would be questionable. The club had no update.

continued ($)

Watch the collision below.

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Filed in: NHL Teams, St. Louis Blues, | KK Hockey | Permalink

How The St. Louis Blues Can Beat The Colorado Avalanche

from Benjamin Hochman of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch,

Wait, you’re telling me a team once beat the Avalanche not just in a playoff game but in an entire playoff series?

After Colorado’s first-round sweeps of the Blues and Predators the past two years — and the Game 1 domination of the Blues this year in the second round — it’s sure hard to believe. But it happened. The Vegas Golden Knights ended the Avs’ postseason in the second round last season.

So to win this year’s second-round series, the Blues must look to the Vegas series for clues.

“Their forecheck really turned it around for them,” Blues coach Craig Berube said Wednesday of the 2021 Golden Knights. “They were good in the forecheck and didn’t give up odd-man rushes. They nullified (Colorado’s) attack. And it starts with the forecheck, 100%.

“Our forecheck was not very good last night. We didn’t get numbers in there. We didn’t stall pucks. And when you don’t do that, they’re up the ice quickly. ... We were probably a little bit on our heels at times, you know? Too cautious. You’ve got to be smart, but you’ve got to be aggressive.”


Filed in: NHL Teams, Colorado Avalanche, St. Louis Blues, | KK Hockey | Permalink

The St. Louis Blues Advance To Round 2 Of The Stanley Cup Playoffs

from Benjamin Hochman of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch,

Confident, cohesive and a little crazy, the Blues stepped off the bus that freezing Winter Classic afternoon in beach wear. Undaunted by Minnesota (both the hockey team and the elements), the “Beach Boys” won the outdoor game. And so, after every Blues home win since, Beach Boys music blared. Sure enough, it happened Thursday at Enterprise Center, as Minnesota’s players, suddenly on summer vacation, became “Beach Boys” themselves.

The swagger-fueled Blues swatted away the Wild for the fourth time in six games, winning 5-1 on Thursday to advance to the second round. And along the way, the Blues overcame seemingly all the adversity — be it injured defensemen and a struggling goalie — and all their adversaries — be it Kirill Kaprizov or Marcus Foligno, who said Thursday morning: “We went into Vegas last year in that hostile arena, crazy fans, much louder than this rink, and we stole a game. That's what we have to do tonight.”

They didn’t do it.

And while I’ve never been to the Vegas rink, I can’t imagine it being that much louder than Enterprise Center was Thursday night.

And we knew the Blues needed to demoralize the Wild early — but really, it was a two-period process. And an impressive one. Nick Leddy (Nick Leddy?) scored the first and only first-period goal, but after two, the Blues led 4-0.

How did they do it? With confidence and cohesion. They killed penalties diabolically. They won puck battles on the boards. And they got contributions from seemingly everyone. And really, that’s the spirit of the playoffs — and the spirit of this team. The Blues are, indeed, a team. And it takes a team.


Below find the game highlights and handshakes.

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Filed in: NHL Teams, St. Louis Blues, | KK Hockey | Permalink

Vladimir Tarasenko Leads The St. Louis Blues To A Win Over The Minnesota Wild

from Jim Thomas of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch,

The statistics tell you that when a best-of-7 series is tied two games apiece, the winner of Game 5 goes on to win the series more than 79 percent of the time.

With that in mind, advantage St. Louis. Getting a third period hat trick from Vladimir Tarasenko – including two huge goals early in the period - the Blues erased a 2-1 Minnesota lead for a 5-2 victory before a loud and sold out crowd at Xcel Energy Center.

As a result, the Blues are now just one victory away from erasing the Wild in this series, with Game 6 on Thursday at Enterprise Center.

Just when you thought the Blues had no answer for Kirill “The Thrill” Kaprizov, who scored both Minnesota goals on first period power plays, Tarasenko stepped up and said: I got this. The hat trick was his second in postseason play and seventh overall as an NHL player.

“It's not the time to think about any achievements,” Tarasenko said. “The biggest thing is we won the game and let's move onto the next one. At this point with the experience in 2019, we learned that only wins matter and it's good we have a win.”


Game highlights are below.

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Filed in: NHL Teams, St. Louis Blues, | KK Hockey | Permalink

Jordan Binnington Helps The Blues Even Their Series With The Wild

from Lou Korac at NHL.com,

Jordan Binnington made 28 saves in his 2022 Stanley Cup Playoffs debut, and the St. Louis Blues defeated the Minnesota Wild 5-2 in Game 4 of the Western Conference First Round at Enterprise Center on Sunday.

The series is tied 2-2. Game 5 is in Minnesota on Tuesday.

Binnington entered the game 0-9 with a 4.19 goals-against average and .875 save percentage in the postseason since a 32-save performance in a 4-1 win in Game 7 against the Boston Bruins to win the 2019 Stanley Cup.

"It felt good, I felt prepared," Binnington said. "We had a good start to the game, a really good first period. Definitely a big win, a hard-fought win. We had guys step in the lineup, but I felt pretty good.

"Definitely I had to be patient. Nothing this morning, wait for the game, just hanging out at home and just prepping."


The game highlights are below.

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Filed in: NHL Teams, St. Louis Blues, | KK Hockey | Permalink

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About Kukla's Korner Hockey

Paul Kukla founded Kukla’s Korner in 2005 and the site has since become the must-read site on the ‘net for all the latest happenings around the NHL.

From breaking news to in-depth stories around the league, KK Hockey is updated with fresh stories all day long and will bring you the latest news as quickly as possible.

Email Paul anytime at pk@kuklaskorner.com



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