So, last night. That was a team I barely recognized.
Fire, passion, intensity, and best of all? For the ENTIRE sixty minutes. Hell yes.
First off, I just wanna toss this out there. WHO WAS RIGHT ABOUT THE D-LINES?!?! This girl. People said that it was ridiculous to put the rookies together, that there needed to be a vet on every blue line, that it would be a disaster to switch it all up, but you know what? It worked. There was more defense in this game than I’ve seen recently. And while my Nikitin-Cola line was just a bit altered, with Nikitin being held from the lineup (get well soon, N64!!), I was pretty impressed with the way Strachan stepped up. I’m just glad he was able to actually play a game, rather than spending his time as a healthy scratch, or worse, driving down I-55 every other day.
Now, remember a week ago when there were so many people UP. IN. ARMS. about Army trading away EJ? Well, how do those people feel about the trade now? Chris Stewart. He just…wow. Six goals in five games. The last Blue to do that? Brett Hull. Um, that bodes pretty well, no? Not to mention that it’s just so easy to make up nicknames from him. Seriously. One of the guys I talk to on Twitter started up the hashtag #chrisstewartnicknames, and it is worth the perusing. Trust me. I have very firm opinions on his nickname (as some of you may be aware), but some of these are just literally laugh out loud funny. What makes me laugh more, though, is the way he has NO EMOTION once he gets back to the bench. He’ll celebrate on the ice, but once he sits down, he’s all, “Yeah, that was a goal, and?” You’d think he was just chilling in front of a TV show he’d seen a bajillion times with the way he just spaces off. I love it.
Playing hockey, scoring goals, like ya do.
And let’s talk about the power play really quickly. Because guys? WE HAZ ONE. Silent Jay was a big part of the PP when he was here. Stewart? Bigger. We officially have scored powerplay goals in each of the last EIGHT GAMES. That hasn’t happened since 2005. That’s one of the most encouraging things that I’ve seen this side of the All Star Break.
But what would a recap of last night’s game be without a discussion of The Arch Bishop? Big Ben. Bish4Mayor. BishIsTheIsh. And all the other amazingly awesome things that he was referred to last night, though I’m partial to BishIsTheIsh and the Arch Bishop. He was just lights out. His huge 6’7″ frame makes the goal look SO TINY, and he got some great looks, great stops on those 39 SOGs. This was his first NHL shutout, and though he may not have broken any records, I’m pretty sure he broke into the hearts of Blues Nation. (Can I get a collective aawwwwww on that? I know it was cheesy. I’m happy for him. Give me a break).
Obviously he showed something to Armstrong as Ty Conklin was placed on waivers today. Being that the team won’t know if he clears waivers until Monday, he’s going to continue the trip to Calgary. So is Jaro on his way back in? Well, maybe. I would certainly hope so given that, well, there’s no one behind Bishop. But, since we won’t know til Monday, no use in speculating.
Either way, I don’t know about you guys, but last night’s game was a serious boost in my morale. I’ve had about enough of Blues “fans” wishing this season could be over already. WHY DO YOU WANT THE SEASON TO END?! Don’t you WANT the season to continue past April 9? Don’t you WANT to see the team go on this huge tear, and show the entire league that we’re not a joke? I’ve had this same issue with Cardinals fans, but you know what? Go ahead. Give up. Get out of my Blues (or Cardinals) Nation. I don’t need fans like you.
I’m looking forward to the rest of the season. I like the boost that CGDS and Shatty have given the lineups. I like how Bishop has stepped up. I like Bergie’s play lately. And while yes, there are things that can be improved (some need it by a lot), last night just made me happy.
Haters, don’t bring us down.