Stanley Cup Favorites? Who? Blues 4 Avalanche 1

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Blues 4 Avalanche 1

Stanley Cup Favorites? Who?

Prior to puck drop, the only thing you heard about the St Louis Blues taking on the Colorado Avalanche was how good the Avs are. The Vegas oddsmakers overwhelmingly picked the Avalanche to hoist the Cup.

This is why they do not play the games on paper. Soon after the puck hit the ice it was apparent the only ones who had not written the Blues off were the Blues. The Notes were ready, and they were not buying anything written about the Avalanche. The Blues clogged the middle of the ice all night.

At one point during the second period, the National (anyone but the) Blues Network highlighted how Nathan MacKinnon squeezed his way through three Blues only to be stifled at the net. The network highlighted MacKinnon’s skill. Not the Blues game plan. Mackinnon, a perennial hart trophy candidate, was able to get off four shots but none of them were quality chances.

The Avalanche were almost never able to enter the offensive zone untouched. Each and every trip there were white jerseys everywhere. Led by the stellar play of newly minted Captain Ryan O’Reilly, the Blues stormed the neutral zone. The Blues put on a clinic in how to stop a skill laden team such as the Avalanche.

Jordan Binnington one of the question marks coming into this opening night was perfect everywhere but the score sheet. Stopping 26 of 27 shots.

At the 4:43 mark, Sammy Blais was whistled for a questionable elbowing penalty. Just 12 seconds into the 2-minute minor, on what could only be considered a funky play the puck meandered across the ice and found the stick of Andre Burakovsky. He let loose what could be called a one-timer that had eyes and beat “Binner.”

The first thought was the Blues were overmatched. That was not the case. The Blues and “Binner” buckled down and took control of the game.

Blues Centerman Robert Thomas left his mark on this game and the league.  Thomas showed off his unique vision twice. Both times Oskar Sundqvist was the recipient hitting the twine.

The first time this happened was at 9:29 of the first and tied the game.

The second occurrence happened in the third giving the Blues a 4-1 lead.

With the score tied at one in the first, Jordan Kyrou, getting a chance to play because the Blues second big offseason acquisition Mike Hoffman was not cleared to play due to a visa issue. Kyrou was able to hold the puck in the zone and making a sweet tic-tac-toe pass to Tyler Bozak in front of the net. Bozak sent it back to Kyrou. He did not miss.

The period ended with the Blues taking 17 shots while only allowing 5.

The second period saw the script get flipped. The Avalanche managed to pepper Binnington with 15 shots. All stopped by the netminder. The second also saw the Avalanche try to use their skill only to be frustrated by the Blue Note.

The best birthday presents are the ones you give to yourself. New Blue and Forth line center Kyle Clifford learned that in the third when he buried a shot on his 30th birthday and first game wearing the Note.

The Avalanche were embarrassed by the Blues on the 25th Anniversary celebration of the team leaving Quebec and arriving in Denver.

Goalie Phillip Grubauer did not look elite. Going 28-32 and looking out of sorts on all four tallies by the visitors.

These two teams will meet again on Friday night. 

The Avalanche should bounce back but expect the Note to be ready and use the same formula that won this game.

Doug Armstrong, I think they trusted the system.

Till next time Hockey FANS.

Guy “Hawaii Blues Fan” Bensing



BlueNote Fan Report  



5 thoughts on “Stanley Cup Favorites? Who? Blues 4 Avalanche 1

  1. Faulk was hitting when it was time. I think our ability to handle the puck was B+,Avs c-. The shots from the point were weak we ruled most of game

  2. The broadcast was so tainted. Listen to the broadcast of every goal. On the Avs goal, the broadcaster sounded like the Avs broadcast team was announcing, with a joyous, “He Scores!” On every Blues goal, he sounded like he stepped on a dog turd. Pathetic!

  3. Observations from Hoosier Blues Fan:

    1) Bad ice? I saw a lot of blown tires that looked funny to me on both sides

    2) Avs first goal was a deflection that changed direction a little, but enough. I thought Binner had the angle and would have stopped it if not for the deflection.

    3) WTF was with that piped in crowd noise on the telecast? It was awful, out of synch with the game and completely annoying. STOP IT, please!!

    4) I thought the announcers were a little biased and absolutely terrible. On Sunny’s second goal, the color person says, “oh that took a bad bounce!”. Hey idiot, it was a puck rolling on edge and Gru played it terrible, then was slow to find his position. As Coach said in LetterKenny, “@#*king embarassing!!”. You are correct sir, that was not an “elite play”.

    5) We looked good enough, but I think there is definitely another gear. I like our determination and patience.

    6) It’s only one game, but it was fun to watch!!

  4. All around good game from the Boys! Thomas is an amazing play maker and is only getting better. I was impressed by almost everyone and I hope Kyrou keeps elevating his game. One negative I thought was the play of Dunn. He made some mistakes out there and was caught flat footed a few times. He needs to be better. Great piece, Guy!

  5. Let me know if this sounds familiar. A Stanley Cup caliber team with questionable goaltending. That was the St. Louis Blues for so many years until 2019. I’m not saying Colorado won’t make the playoffs but goaltending might hurt them again in the playoffs.


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