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The Little Caesars Blues Explosion: Detroit 1 - St. Louis 6

St Louis Blues v Detroit Red Wings Photo by Gregory Shamus/Getty Images


With the early start and my being busy this morning, I don’t have much for the pre-game. Detroit looks to build off their big win against Winnipeg against another top Western conference team.

Let’s hope the team can get off to a good start with the early puck drop. 1pm start?

1st Period

Just like when we play Tampa and I live in fear of Stamkos and Kucherov, Vladamir Taresenko terrifies me every time he’s on the ice against us. There’s a reason they call him Tarasenk-Show.

He’s one of my favorite players to watch, except of course when he’s playing Detroit. Along with Schenn and Schwartz, the Blues have three scorers that are hard to stop this season. If Detroit gives up the quality of chances they have in many games this year, it could be a long afternoon.

But Detroit has the Snip Show, and we know how much fun that can be. Hopefully we have the makings of an entertaining game.

Howard vs Allen in goal. Joel Edmundson wastes no time in laying a big hit on Green.

Jake Allen saves the first Detroit chance off a point shot from Trevor Daley. After a concerning start to the game, Detroit is getting some pressure a few minutes in. If you didn’t see the news, Tyler Bertuzzi draws into the lineup. IMO, he needs to not try to do too much in his first game, just make the simple plays and re-adapt to the NHL pace.

Detroit is having a hell of a time getting control of the puck in their defensive zone. Several times the puck has bounced over their sticks, preventing them from a clean zone exit. Not sure if it’s an ice issue, but they need to get that sorted.

At the first TV timeout of the game, Detroit isn’t playing great, but they’re not playing bad either. The most concerning issue is what I mentioned above, clean zone exits. It’s early, and it could be the ice, but that could lead to big trouble as the game goes on.

Glendening wins a board battle seven minutes in. Detroit has been doing pretty well at one-on-one puck battles so far, which is what gave Montreal such an easy time in the 10-1 game. So far, it’s good to see them continuing that positive trend that started in the Winnipeg game. If Detroit doesn’t fight for every puck, they get in trouble.

So far, Detroit has done well at keeping St. Louis to the outside on their scoring chances. Detroit has had the better chances through the first 9 minutes. Howard obviously has to play well for Detroit to win today, but the team needs to limit the high danger chances against him.

St. Louis takes the first penalty. Samuel Blais goes off for high-sticking Nyquist.

Frk does a tremendous job to keep the puck in at the line to set up an eventual one-timer for himself, but Allen keeps it out.

Athanasiou and Green play catch, leading to a point shot from Green. Mantha almost puts the rebound home. No goal, but it was a nice setup and a nice quick shot. Detroit didn’t score on the power play, but I agree with Mickey Redmond that this the best looking PP in a long time.

They were in the St. Louis zone for nearly the entire two minutes. If they keep doing that, the PP goals will come.

Just after the penalty expires, St. Louis scores on a weird play. The Blues had a defenseman join the rush to create a 3 on 2. The initial shot deflected off a Blue, then a Red Wing, and Schwartz put home the rebound from in close.

As frustrating as it was, that was a bit of a flukey goal.

I’m going to try to find a gif that has more of the play, but if this is still in final recap, I was unsuccessful :)

Detroit goes to their second power play of the day. If they can do what they did last time, they'll have a good chance to score.

Carl Gunnarsson goes off for tripping, and there’s no doubt about this call. It was a clear penalty.

Athanasiou nearly scored another highlight reel goal, as he beat two defenders with one move, only to put it a few inches wide.

Detroit again spends a lot of the penalty in the Blues’ zone, but good setups come up empty again. Nyquist hits the post, but the penalty expires with no goals, but not for lack of a good PP effort.

Jaden Schwartz blocked a Mike Green shot and does not look good. He goes down and has a lot of trouble getting up. He took the puck in the ankle, and he can’t put any weight on his skate as he is helped off the ice.

Dekeyser makes a really lazy pass that nearly led to an odd-man advantage for St. Louis, but he was bailed out when St. Louis couldn’t keep the puck in the zone.

Kronwall takes a penalty for interference. He doesn’t really have an argument, although I’m always frustrated how that penalty isn’t always called. I think it should be called every time.

St. Louis doesn’t score, but they will have over a minute of the man advantage at the beginning of the second.

Detroit was the better team overall in the first, but a couple mental lapses could have this score be more lopsided. 1-0 St. Louis at the end of the first.

Detroit played pretty well in the first, I can’t really complain, but man that pass by Dekeyser. Watching DDK play defense:

BTW, this is the play I was talking about from DDK:

Second Period

Larkin nearly ties the game shorthanded on a two-on-one with Jonathan Ericsson. Larkin set up 52 with a nice pass, but Riggy couldn’t put it home. To be fair, most defensemen don’t get much practice finishing an odd man rush.

Shortly after, Brayden Schenn takes a penalty to make it 4v4.

After Detroit couldn’t score on a short power play, Vladamir Sobotka makes it 2-0. Tarasenko was driving the net, but Howard really has to make that save.

Detroit is outplaying St. Louis overall, but are losing 2-0 early in the second.

Athanasiou takes a shot from far out that nearly finds Bertuzzi’s stick for a re-direct but just misses.

And the wheels may be falling off as Upshall makes it 3-0. Howard has almost no chance as Upshall was able to break in alone, and he beats Howard five hole. Three goals on the last 6 shots.

Kronwall gives up the puck at the blue line. While this risks being obvious, Kronwall has to do better there.

This is a real gut check time for Detroit. Do they fall apart like they did against Montreal, or can they get back in the game?

Fun fact: Detroit has been outscored 13-1 in the last 2 games I’ve recapped.

Jake Allen keeps the SHUTOUT alive by stoning Larkin on a breakaway. Did I say that Allen has a SHUTOUT? Because he has a SHUTOUT!

(Can a jinx work on the other team)

After going down 3-0, Detroit has continued to play hard. I’m only saying that because we’ve seen them throw in the towel a few times this season, and they aren’t doing that today. This has to be a really frustrating game for them because they have been the better team overall and they find themselves down by 3.

Detroit gives up a 4th goal, and it’s on Howard again, unfortunately. I don’t know if it’s the lack of chances against, but he’s not having a good day. Also:

The fans give Howard the Bronx cheer as he stops a dump in. I feel bad. Howard has kept Detroit in so many games, but two out of the four goals were not good today. It’s 100% not all his fault, but a couple of the goals were mostly on him.

My mood at this point:

Dammit. I meant second period. I’m not going back to fix it, so whatever.

Third Period

Petr Mrazek starts the third period, which is not surprising. It’s certainly not all on Howard, but he could have been better on two of the goals, and it’s pretty much the obvious move at Blashill’s disposal.

If you were hoping for a great start to the third, don’t. Detroit takes a penalty a minute in.

Ericsson takes a hooking penalty and Detroit goes shorthanded for 2 minutes.

Detroit kills the penalty, and it’s still 4-0 St. Louis.

Frans Nielsen scores a rebound goal off of the....third rebound on a play around Allen? 4-1.

And maybe Detroit is going to come back....and it’s 5-1. Ericsson and Daley are on the ice as Dmitri Jaskin gets a breakaway up the middle and beat Mrazek, who had little to no chance.

After the 10-1 game, I really think I’m in danger of being broken. I love doing recaps. But man, this isn’t fun. I really hope that Detroit can turn this around. At the same time, St. Louis is a very good team. But on the other hand, Detroit has given them scoring chances on a silver platter. OK, I’m arguing with myself.

And St. Louis scores again to make it 6-1 because of course they did.

Your final is 6-1.